British Prime Minister Theresa May on Saturday said that she believed the official response to the fire that had engulfed a high-rise in London on Wednesday morning was “not good enough”, reported Reuters. Her statement came the same day the British Police said at least 58 were feared to have died in the Grenfell Tower blaze.
“The response of the emergency services, National Health Service and the community has been heroic,” the prime minister said in a statement. “But frankly, the support on the ground for the families who needed help or basic information in the initial hours after this appalling disaster was not good enough.”
The 58 victims who were believed to be missing after the disaster have been presumed dead, the London Police said. The toll stood at 30 on Friday. “That number 58 may change. I really hope it won’t, but it may increase,” Commander Stuart Cundy told The Telegraph. “Our focus has been on those who we know were in Grenfell Tower. However, there may be other people who were in there on the night that others were not aware were there.”
Cundy added that the police will investigate the refurbishment of the building in 2016 and also vowed to act against those confirmed responsible for the tragedy.
May faces criticism
A week after the Conservatives’ dismal performance in the UK general election, the prime minister was criticised for her lack of swift action during the crisis. A group of angry protestors on Friday had entered the Kensington Town Hall shouting “we want justice” and “shame on you”, according to Reuters. On Saturday, protestors had gathered at Whitehall and demanded her resignation.
UK government offers assistance
The government has promised £5 million (around Rs 41.3 crore) for food, clothes and other emergency supplies for the victims, BBC reported. May has ordered a public inquiry into the incident and also said that the government will bear the victims’ cost of legal representation.
May added that those who were left homeless by the blaze will be given homes in three weeks. “The inquiry will be open and transparent. The government and ministers will cooperate fully,” she said, according to The Telegraph.