20 September 2014

Synagogue: My survival is a miracle – Church worker



A survivor in last  Friday’s collapsed building used as a guest house by The Synagogue Church of All Nations yesterday, gave a graphic picture of his 28 hours experience under the rubbles.
The 28 year-old Business administration graduate from the University of West London, who gave his name as Taiwo Temitayo  described his survival as a miracle, adding that while other victims, majority of whom were foreigners died in the debris, a particular woman who was by his side also escaped.

He gave this narration just as the National Emergency Management Agency  , NEMA disclosed that the death toll in the tragic incident was 86, as against the earlier figure which it gave as 80. The number of survivors according to NEMA was still 131.
Besides, indication emerged yesterday that the collapsed building was the wing occupied by South Africans.

Describing his survival  as a walk in the shadow of death, Temitayo, a worker with SCOAN, said “ I read Business science in school but was privileged to be part of the District Coordinator of the church, which  attend to foreigners.
We have a particular time for meals. So on that fateful day,  I was coordinating the lunch, with majority of our guests on the ground floor.  I later went  to get my own food which was sandwich , bread and egg, while the  visitors had two meal options; semolina and egusi and fried rice , fish and salad.

“I left my food and  went to get plastic cups which I placed on the visitors tables. Barely had I finished placing the cups and was about responding to a question by one of our visitors than  I saw the building caving in. I covered by hands with both hands to avoid a brick falling on me. The next thing I saw was a total black out. I  had to switch on my phone to brighten the place. When I wanted to move, I could not because of the brick that was on top of the table I hid under.

I  heard people praying in different languages, including English language. Some were shouting Jesus while others were shouting the blood of Jesus.  I could not shout because I was saving my breath. All I did was to pray in my mind as we were taught. I tried making calls  to alert people  but there was no network.

“At that point, even though I had faith , I prayed to God to forgive me of all known and unknown sins and also asked the Holy Spirit to strengthen me until help would come.  The panic under the rubbles  alone , was enough to kill one.  But I decided to stay calm, awaiting when help would come.

At a point I  could not breath. I started breathing through the mouth. When all hope of getting out alive started dawning , I saw an opening and decided to crawl out. In the process, I had my body pieced by nails and other hard objects. But I refused to bow to the pains and continued until I managed to get outside. By then I was told it was 5.05pm , next day.  The woman by my side  also managed to come out. I was taken to a hospital around Igando, from where I was  discharged”.

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