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Four dead as construction lift defaulted

By James Atem Kuir

Four construction workers have died and another one in critical condition after a lift equipment they were using to take building materials on the upper floors defaulted and came down crashing, at the South Sudan Broadcasting Corporation (SSBC)compound yesterday.

SSBC Managing-director James Magok Chilim Chok said three of the deceased workers were Chinese nationals while the fourth victim was a South Sudanese.

“Four construction workers including three Chinese nationals and one South Sudanese unfortunately died this morning when a lift equipment that was carrying them up the transmission tower fell. Two died at the scene of the incident and the other two later succumbed to injuries at Chinese Friendship Hospital,” he said on phone interview with Juba Monitor last evening.

“Another South Sudanese national is in critical condition with both legs broken, at the Chinese Friendship Hospital,” he added.

He stated that the workers were climbing in lifting equipment at about 60 meters high up the new broadcast tower under construction when one of the sling ropes holding the gear broke loose and came down under heavyweight leading to the fatal accident.

“The incident is being investigated but according to what we observed when we rushed to the site, the equipment fell probably because it was overloaded or some of the ropes holding the equipment was worn out, otherwise the engineers who were operating the equipment are the ones who died, so we don’t have a conclusive evidence of what exactly happened,” the SSBC he said.

The national public service broadcaster, SSBC which operates both radio and television, has new-state-of-art studios and broadcast tower being constructed with funding from China Aid, the Chinese government International Development and Cooperation Agency.

This followed a memorandum of understanding signed between the Chinese government and the Managing-director of SSBC, in 2018.

The cost of the upgrading and modernization project was estimated at 15 million US dollars by the Chinese government-run media Xinhua.

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