Hundreds attend apartment fire victims janazah at Bronx Masjid

Hundreds of mourners turned out for the janazah of Muslims that died in the deadly apartment blaze in the Bronx, New York City.

At least 17 people, including eight children, died in the fire on January 9 with a further 63 poisoned by the smoke. The residents in the building were mostly immigrant Muslims from the Gambia.

The fire is believed to have been started by a space heater.

The janazah at the Islamic Cultural Center in Fordham Heights was for 15 of the 17 victims. Separate funerals were held in recent days for two of the victims at an Islamic center in Harlem.

The mosque reached capacity quickly and many mourners braved freezing temperatures outside to watch the service via livestream on jumbo screens.

The dead ranged in age from 2 to 50.

City officials named them as: Fatoumata Drammeh, 50, female; Foutmala Drammeh, 21, female; Muhammed Drammeh, 12, male; Nyumaaisha Drammeh, 19, female; Haji Dukary, 49, male; Fatoumata Dukureh, 5, female; Haja Dukureh, 37, female; Mariam Dukureh, 11, female; Mustapha Dukureh, 12, male; Omar Jambang, 6, male; Sera Janneh, 27, female; Haouwa Mahamadou, 5, female; Seydou Toure, 12, male; Fatoumata Tunkara, 43, female; Isatou Jabbie, 31, female; Hagi Jawara, 47, male; Ousmane Konteh, 2, male.

Demanding action

The Imam, Sheikh Musa Drammeh, said he opened the Janazah for the wider public as he wanted to draw attention to the difficult conditions many people in the Bronx live in.

“Let everybody see 15 caskets of their fellow Bronxites being buried because of the condition in which they lived,” he said.

“If these people lived in Midtown Manhattan, this wouldn’t have happened.

“They would not have needed space heaters. The conditions in which they lived in the Bronx caused their death.”

He added: “We are No. 1 for everything bad…They will never achieve the American dream because they lived in the Bronx. Their families will never see them again because they lived in the Bronx. We are having this funeral today because they lived in the Bronx.”

Residents of the building had complained about the substandard conditions in the apartments.  

Members of the Gambian community have called for more investment and safer conditions in the Bronx.

“What is happening here in the Bronx, it is what is happening across our city, where the communities with Black, brown and immigrant people are,” Mayor Eric Adams said.

“It’s time to end those inequalities so we don’t have our babies and our families torn apart by tragedy. The American dream for too many burned in that fire.”

FUND HONEST INDEPENDENT MUSLIM JOURNALISM

Donate today and help us tell the stories that matter. Together we can make a difference

Donate today and help us tell the stories that matter.
Together we can make a difference

The mainstream media has been justifying genocide in Gaza. Islamophobia and censorship are the norm. We're changing that. Our journalism has reached over 300M impressions on social media since October 7th. On TV, our rolling news coverage has featured key figures like Husam Zomlot, Avi Shlaim, Gideon Levy and Jeremy Corbyn.

We need your support to reveal the truth and ensure our voices are heard. Donate today.

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

TOP STORIES

RELATED STORIES

DONATE TO GOOD CAUSES
THIS DHUL HIJJAH

DONATE TO GOOD
CAUSES THIS DHUL HIJJAH

Give your
zakat and
sadaqah
to trusted charities.

Give your zakat and sadaqah to trusted charities.

Our 100% donation policy means every penny goes directly to your favourite charities.

Automate your donations over the first 10 days of Dhul Hijjah and make the most of these blessed days

CONTACT INFORMATION

Islam Channel
Media House
428-432 Ley Street
London
IG2 7BS

+(44) 207 374 4511