“There were trapped bodies, parts of bodies, blood all over the place and people’s handbags and shoes scattered,” The Associated Press quoted a witness as saying. “I’m so traumatized I could not sleep last night for the horrors repeating themselves in my mind.”
Rescue workers were removing the rubble to look for survivors Sunday. According to state media, up to 200 people may have been killed. After the disaster, mortuaries in the city were overflowing.
The building of the church had been partially completed in a hurry for the ordination service.
Some journalists have complained that church officials tried to prevent them from documenting the tragedy by seeking to seize cameras and forcing them to leave.
President Muhammadu Buhari expressed his condolences “over the many deaths and injury recorded following the incident,” presidential spokesman Garba Shehu said in a statement.
Collapsing of buildings is not uncommon in Nigeria. In September 2014, at least 116 people, including 84 South Africans, were killed in Lagos in the collapse of a church belonging to televangelist T.B. Joshua.