A digger arm works to remove rubble in the rescue operation at the coastal town of George

President Cyril Ramaphosa on Thursday visited the site of collapsed building in George and assured full government support to the families of the deceased and injured workers.

On May 6, a building was collapsed in George Municipality located in the Western Cape, with 81 people reported to be onsite.

According to official figures released on May 16, 33 out of the 62 recovered persons passed away. Twelve people were admitted to the hospital and 19 people still missing.

Ramaphosa, who visited the site in person, said that the government doesn't want to increase the burden, the suffering, and the grief of the victims' families, adding that "We want to be there as government at all levels to demonstrate our compassion," SA News reported.

The president held a briefing with various people who were involved in the rescue mission and dealing with different aspects of the disaster including Western Cape Premier Allan Winde alongside many other ministers.

The officials gave him an update on the work done so far and how the community supported the victims since the incident took place. In response, the president praised their efforts, highlighting that he is satisfied with the way South Africa is able to deal with such incidents.

"It will take some time for all aspects of this disaster to be properly tied together... I can assure you that the seriousness in which this matter is being [dealt with] will lead to the truth coming out," the President said, urging for patience while the investigation continues," he said.

He added, "We are a transparent government. We are able to reveal everything as it should be revealed. Let us have a level of patience. I know it is very difficult for those who have lost their loved ones to have that level of patience."

The president also offered condolences to the families of the victims and wished a speedy recovery for those admitted to the hospital.

Ramaphosa noted that his administration is currently focused on saving lives, taking care of injured people and ensuring that the families of the people who died in the incident are receiving proper attention.

The visit came just one day after Ramaphosa signed the National Health Insurance (NHI) bill into law to provide equal access to healthcare services and address inequalities in the country.