Mahdia tragedy: DNA samples being sent to New York; bodies should be identified by Friday


DNA samples from the bodies of the unidentified victims of the tragic Mahdia Secondary School Female Dormitory will be sent to the Mount Sinai laboratory in New York and test results will be back in Guyana by Friday.

This is according to President Dr. Irfaan Ali who explained that this means the victims, whose bodies were burnt beyond recognition, should be identified by then.

On Tuesday, Barbadian Forensic Pathologist Dr. Shubhakar Karra Paul arrived in Guyana to assist authorities with identifying the bodies.

The Forensic Pathologist is expected to help with the identification of some 13 bodies through DNA testing; these bodies are believed to be badly charred and as such, has posed challenges to local authorities seeking to establish identities.

He is expected to travel to Mahdia on Wednesday to collect samples from the remaining families.

“The team is in the process of collecting all samples from the remains and from the parents after which those samples will be packaged and transferred sometime tomorrow to Mount Sinai.

“They will be flown to Mount Sinai labs in New York because this lab provides the shortest return time in terms of the results,” the President said during a live update on Tuesday.

A total of 19 persons– 18 girls and one boy- died in the fire. Six autopsies have already been completed.

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