Update: Rescue Operation of Multi Storey building collapse into Mosque compound – Dar es Salaam, Tanzania

On the morning of Friday 29 March 2013 a 16 storey building under construction and adjacent to the open area of the Dar Es Salaam Imambargha collapsed. Sadly, this took place when there were people including children in the compound. Initial reports suggest several people including construction workers, residents and children were missing.

Rescue efforts have been under way since the collapse. The Dar es Salaam Jamaat & Africa Federation officials and hundreds of volunteers from communities as well as the Tanzanian Police Force and Fire and Rescue are at the site of the accident.  Efforts have been around the clock, with the hopes of finding survivors.  A crane was used overnight to remove the large pieces of concrete.

The Chairman of Africa Federation, Alhaj Anwarali Dharamsi, his entire team and workers with heavy duty equipment and trucks from his Company, Tanzania Road Haulage (1980) Ltd. worked round the clock with others in the rescue operations and in clearing the rubble to reach down to those who were trapped underneath the rubble.

Various construction companies have also arrived to offer equipment and assistance.  “I have never seen so many different communities come together like this” says Sadiq Datoo, Deputy Secretary General of The World Federation.

Four children of the community have been trapped under the rubble as they were playing in the compound area during the time of the incident.  We are saddened to report that Suhail Mohamed Karim (Age 13)  and Salman Salim Damji, (Age 8) were rescued but did not survive.  Yusuf Khaki and Zahid Kanji who are both only 12 have not yet been found.

The Tanzanian President Jakaya Kikwete visited the scene of the disaster yesterday and posted messages of condolence on his Twitter account.  Mizengo Pinda, the Prime Minister is expected to visit today.

The World Federation and The Africa Federation is asking the community to continue praying for the safe rescue of Yusuf Khaki and Zahid Kanji.  We pray for the safety of all people who have been harmed and those courageous individuals who are working on the rescue efforts, as well as the well-being of those affected.

The World Federation also offers its heartfelt condolences to the families of the Suhail Mohamed and Salman Salim during this trying time.

TADA top brass pay a visit to Shiraz Walji and team!

Members of different Asian communities in Dar-es-salaam representing TADA, Tanzania Asian Development Association, paid a courtesy visit to the President of KSIJ Dar, Alhaj Shiraz Bhai Walji and his team. The purpose of the meeting was to get the support of our community to help establish TADA as a significant body with ample muscle, with the desire to get the Asian community under one roof to preserve common heritage and share a common stage to jointly undertake social responsibility to serve the community and the nation at large. TADA was established to raise awareness of what good the Asian community in Tanzania is doing. In the process of raising this awareness, TADA will also garner the necessary political clout.

The TADA team was represented by their Chairman Shabir Abji (Ismaili community), Executive Secretary, Dinesh Vaishnav (Hindu community), Hon. Secretary, Bharat Ruparelia (Hindu community), Savio Fernandes (Goan community), Shabbir Zavery (Bohora community) and Shiraz Rashid (KSIJ). Our president Shiraz Bhai Walji, Hon. Secretary, Zulfikar Chandoo and the Chairman of Trustees, Abbas Jessa, represented KSIJ Dar’s team.

This meeting of combined powers from all wakes of the Asian community in Tanzania signifies a major shift in the outlook of the minority Asians in Tanzania. A lot of social issues were discussed and if the combined powers were to implement on the solutions of these issues as a combined body, TADA would be a powerful agent of change and bring significant positive influence to all the Asian communities as well as the Tanzanian community in general.

The meeting was a success and the need for such a coalition was apparent. Our president, Shiraz Bhai Walji, stressed the importance of such gatherings and hailed the leadership of TADA for initiating such a body with noble objectives.