An additional three bodies have been found at the Synagogue Church of All Nations in Nigeria, resulting in 70 deaths. It is not clear whether the deceased are South Africans.
Commenting on the deaths on Tuesday, Jacob Zuma said: “This is a particularly difficult time for South Africa. Not in the recent history of our country have we had this large number of our people die in one incident outside the country.”
He said he had directed various government departments to ensure relatives of the victims were taken to Lagos to identify bodies and repatriate them. The identities of the deceased had not yet been made public.
On Wednesday, Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane told reporters that “the more technical questions” should be asked at a later stage.
“This incident happened in a foreign country. Having said that, we will leave no stone unturned to bring back their loved ones to South Africa,” she said.
An advanced team of 10 experts left South Africa for Lagos on Wednesday evening.