The incident occurred on the evening of Tuesday, July 11, 2023, in Rubariro Village of Juru Cell, Gahini Sector of Kayonza District as four individuals removed the church’s roof as part of a demolition process to construct a new one.
Two masons and two mason-helpers were involved in the roof removal when the church collapsed.
Unfortunately, a 45-year-old mason lost his life in the incident.
Joseph Rukeribuga, the executive secretary of Gahini Sector has told IGIHE that the church collapse occurred after a request was made to ADEPR leaders to either renovate or demolish the old structure due to its deteriorating condition.
"At around 4:15 PM, the ADEPR Juru church collapsed on four people who were removing roofing sheets. The church was old, and we had requested ADEPR to renovate it or demolish it to build a new one," explained Rukeribuga.
"They had already made bricks and were in the process of requesting a construction permit for the new church. Masons and helpers were assigned to demolish the old structures. As they removed the roof, the walls collapsed, resulting in one fatality," he further elaborated.
Rukeribuga mentioned that residents, local leaders, and security officials quickly responded to the incident, providing assistance and transporting the victims to a nearby health facility.
Unfortunately, one of the individuals was confirmed dead upon arrival. The injured victims, including the deceased mason, were taken to Gahini Hospital. Two of them sustained minor injuries, while one was severely injured.
The church’s construction primarily consisted of wood, much of which had rotted over time, according to Rukeribuga.