George Building Collapse: Two Electrical Interns Dreams Cut Short

George Building Collapse: Two Electrical Interns Dreams Cut Short

  • Among the workers in the rubble at the George building collapse were two electrical engineer interns
  • The collapse, which occurred earlier this week, has left 19 people still unaccounted for and 12 others recovering in local hospitals
  • Siphesihle Mehlo's mother described the student as an aspiring electrician with ‘big dreams’ after the George building collapse
Electrical Engineering interns amongst deceased
Electrical apprentice Siphesihle Mehlo was in a building under construction when it collapsed in George on Monday afternoon. Images: Twitter/ @LudidiVelani
Source: Twitter

In a devastating incident that has shocked the community, the bodies of two female electrical interns have been retrieved from the rubble of the collapsed building in George.

The interns, students from Africa Private College, were among the 33 individuals confirmed dead following the disaster.

The collapse, which occurred earlier this week, has left 19 people still unaccounted for and 12 others recovering in local hospitals.

George municipality confirmed the two bodies found

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Grieving families call for clarity after 260-hour recovery in George building collapse

According to Zimoja, Dr. Michelle Gratz, the spokesperson for George Municipality, confirmed the discovery of the students' bodies yesterday.

"I can confirm that two female students were doing an electrical internship when the building collapsed.
"The two female students were from the Africa Private College. Their families have been informed about the tragic incident, and we are not in a position to release their names at the moment.
"We can tell you that they were part of the electricity internship programme and supplied their services."

The building, under construction at the time, has been the focus of an intense rescue operation.

The confirmation that 47 victims have been linked to their families provides some closure, but the community remains in mourning as the search continues for those still missing.

One of the interns

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In a report by Daily Maverick, Siphesihle Mehlo, a 21-year-old electrical apprentice, was one of the 33 workers whose bodies were recovered from the debris of the collapsed multi-storey construction site.

"Don’t worry, Mom. I’m going to achieve great things for you. You have the best daughter in me."

These heartfelt words resonate deeply with Nompucuko Mehlo as she remembers her daughter, Siphesihle, whose promising life was tragically cut short in the recent building collapse in George.

See the video of the family below:

The collapse has left the community in mourning and has sparked ongoing rescue efforts, with 19 individuals still unaccounted for and 12 others receiving treatment in hospitals.

"She had big dreams and always shared them with me. She wanted success, and her bright smile lit up everyone’s face."

Siphesihle was on-site to complete her apprenticeship as part of her training at Africa Skills College.

Read also

George building collapse: Search and rescue mission concludes, investigation begins

The college requires students to gain practical experience under the guidance of qualified artisans before they can graduate. Siphesihle was gaining valuable hands-on experience with another student when tragedy struck.

South Africans call for the government to take accountability

Netizens sent their condolences to the Mehlo family and asked the government to push harder and compensate her family.

@MbekezeliMB commented:

"My heart goes out to the Mehlo family and all those who have lost loved ones in this tragedy. It's saddening what has happened. Accountability must follow for Siphesihle and all others who lost their lives and got hurt. Thank you, Velani, for your dedication. Siyabulela!"

@MissveeNg said:

"We are failing Siphesihle Mehlo coz why are we quiet about this George incident #ENCA #etv @ChrisExcel102, @TakaTina1 #GeorgeBuildingCollapse."

@tmqakanya1 added that:

"My heart and prayers are with the Mehlo family during this difficult time. It's hard; there are more questions than answers. How on earth can a massive building collapse? What went wrong?"

Read also

George building collapse site to be handed over to police on Friday

Search and rescue mission concludes, investigation begins

Briefly News previously reported that after a gruelling 260 hours, search and rescue operations officially wrapped up at the multi-storey building collapse in George, Western Cape.

Officials completed the operation and handed the site over to the SAPS and the Department of Labour and Employment on 17 May so that a formal probe into the incident could begin.

Source: Briefly News

Reitumetse Makwea avatar

Reitumetse Makwea (Editor) Reitumetse Makwea is a Current Affairs journalist at Briefly News. She has a National diploma, Advanced diploma and Post-graduate diploma in Journalism from the Tshwane University of Technology. She first worked as a student journalist and freelancer for Caxton's Record Noweto and later joined The Citizen News, where she worked for a little over 3 years covering politics, environmental news, business, education, and health. Reitumetse joined Briefly News in 2024. Email:

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