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Tue, 10 Dec 2019 02:31 GMT

Tanzania Mourns 69 Killed in Fuel Tanker Blast


7Dnews London

Sun, 11 Aug 2019 20:23 GMT

On Sunday August11th, Tanzania mourned as 69 people were interred after they perished when a crashed fuel tanker exploded, whilst crowds rushed to syphon off leaking petrol.

The blast, which took place on Saturday near the town of Morogoro, west of the economic capital Dar es Salaam, is the latest in a series of similar disasters in Africa. 

Declaring a period of mourning through Monday, President John Magufuli will be represented at the funerals by Prime Minister Kassim Majaliwa, an official statement said. 

"We're currently mourning the loss of 69 people, the last of whom died while being transferred by helicopter to the national hospital in Dar es Salaam," Majaliwa told residents in Morogoro, 200 kilometres (125 miles) west of Dar es Salaam. 

The number of injured stood at 66, Majaliwa said. The burials were due to start Sunday afternoon after relatives had identified the dead. 

"The preparations for the burials have been completed. Individual graves have been dug and the coffins are ready," Parliamentary Affairs Minister Jenista Mhagama said Sunday, adding that experts were available to offer psychological counselling to the victims' relatives.  

DNA tests would be carried out on bodies that were no longer recognisable, Mhagama said, adding that families could take the remains of their loved ones and organise their own burials if they preferred.