18 June 2017

Tanzania: Official - No Body of Tanzanian Recovered From London Tragedy

London/Dar — No body of a Tanzanian has been recovered from Greenfell Tower fire, according to official reports.

A statement by Tanzania high commissioner in the UK, Dr Asha-Rose Migiro, said as of Friday 30 bodies were recovered from the tower, but there was no body of a Tanzanian national. However, it has been reported that 70 people are still missing.

The statement was released just a day after media in the UK reported that a Tanzanian had been arrested after posting pictures on Facebook of the body of someone believed to have leapt to his death from the Grenfell Tower fire has been jailed for three months.

However, Dr Migiro said the embassy was not aware of the reports.

Omega Mwaikambo pleaded guilty at Westminster Magistrates Court to two counts of sending by a public communications network an offending, indecent or obscene matter.

Mwaikambo, who lives just yards away from the tower, had watched the blaze engulf the building throughout the night and had made cups of tea for firefighters as they battled the blaze.

However later on Wednesday morning he saw a body bag outside his flat and took the photos on his iPad and uploaded them to Facebook.

Prosecutor Tom Little said: "He lives very close to Grenfell Tower as the court will be aware for the catastrophic fire on June 14. "He uploaded photographs and video of the deceased inside the body bag and then five photographs of the upper body and the face and the blood that had drained from the body.

"It appears as if that individual might have been someone that jumped from the tower and had not survived and was waiting to be moved to the coroner's mortuary."

After his arrest he provided the police with the pin to his iPad and phone and the images were taken down from the web.

Mr Little said the offences were high culpability because "even the fact of the death would not have been known to the family" of the victim at this early stage.

The court heard the victim has yet to be identified and the defendant had been kept in custody for his own safety after his arrest.

Michelle Denney for the defence said "It was an unusual case" and Mwaikambo, who has not previous convictions, had been making tea for the firefighters.

She said: "He found the deceased person and was shocked by the fact the body was there and felt a sense of shock that the body was there unattended."

The defendant had tried to find someone to come and help but "there was not one else in sight" and took the photos to "show how the victim was being treated" and get someone's attention.

She said: "He was not someone that has gone to the scene to look at what's going on in some macabre way."

She added her client had witnessed a lot of the terrible things throughout the night, it was an "error in judgement" to post the images and "would not have done so had he not witness some of the traumatic events that unfolded".

Tanzania

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