At least 16 people were killed and several more seriously injured on Sunday when a building collapsed in Cameroon’s business hub Douala, firefighters said.
A three-year-old girl was among the victims and another three children are in intensive care, said hospital officials.
A senior fire brigade official told AFP on condition of anonymity that the current death toll of 16 people was a provisional toll.
The four-storey block collapsed onto another residential building around 1:30 am (0030 GMT) in the north of the city.
Rescuers were searching through the wreckage for survivors.
“The situation is under control and firefighters are working to ensure no one remains under the rubble”, said Littoral region governor Samuel Dieudonne Ivaha Diboua, who visited the site of the collapse.
Douala’s Laquintinie hospital said it had taken in 13 patients and said two — a girl of three and a young woman of 19 — had died.
It added that three children among those injured were receiving emergency treatment.
The others in hospital included two teenage girls, a 28-year-old woman and five men.
Five people died in similar circumstances in Douala in 2016 when authorities blamed the poor state of repairs and apparent violations of building regulations.
In June that year, local authorities identified 500 buildings in danger of collapse.
The former president also blamed the nation’s level of development on inconsistent policy by previous administrations.
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