On behalf of the government and people of South Africa, Zuma conveyed a message of condolences to the custodian of the two Holy Mosques, Saudi Arabian king Salman bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud, and the people of Saudi Arabia, the international relations and co-operation department said in a statement on Saturday.
“The South African government sends its deepest sympathy and condolences to the government and the people of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia following the tragic loss of lives of pilgrims as a result of the crane accident at the Grand Mosque. Our prayers go out to the families and friends of the deceased and we wish those injured in the accident, a speedy recovery,” Zuma said.
The South African Consulate in Jeddah was monitoring the situation in Mecca following the accident. Thus far, no reports had been received of any South African citizens affected by the accident, the department said.
At least 107 people died when a large crane was toppled, apparently in strong winds and heavy rain, and crashed down into the mosque. Over 230 people were injured.