23 November 2012

Namibia: Ministry Wants Answers From Lift Company

THE Ministry of Foreign Affairs has launched an investigation into the cause of a lift accident in the ministry’s building on Wednesday.

A lift installed by the Otis Elevator Company fell eight floors, seriously injuring Parliament restaurant worker Jessica Katusuva.

A paramedic at the accident scene said Katusuva injured her pelvis and thigh bones.

The acting permanent secretary in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Mbapeua Muvangua, said in a press statement yesterday that an investigation had been launched to determine the cause of the incident.

“The company will provide a full report to the ministry on the cause of this incident in due course,” the statement reads.

Muvangua said Otis had promised to take care of all Katusuva’s medical expenses “at an appropriate medical institution”.

The ministry added: “This unfortunate incident is deeply regretted.”

Katusuva told The Namibian from her hospital bed yesterday that she was still in pain.

Recounting the incident, she said: “I went to floors 2, 7 and 8 to take food to them [government officials]. I used the left lift the whole time. When I came back, I knew in my heart that I should not take that lift, but it was the only available one as the other one was already down.”

Katusuva’s manager, Sakeus Namene, said he was very unhappy over what had happened, adding that someone should be held accountable.

“It was a matter of life and death. Falling from the eighth floor is no joke. It was an embarrassment for the ministry,” he told The Namibian.

Otis could not be reached for comment.

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