Again, another building collapses in Lagos

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Again, a three-storey building collapsed midday, yesterday, on 50, Kakawa Street, Campos, Lagos Island.

According to the Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA), there were no casualties recorded, as no one was trapped in the rubble, because it had already been marked for demolition and the occupants had vacated the property.

But, the collapsed structure reportedly affected a nearby bungalow which had three occupants.

Security operatives and emergency workers went to the scene to ensure other residents were safe and the rubble disposed off properly.

Yesterday’s incident comes on the heels of a similar mishap which was recorded in the metropolis on Wednesday, March 13, when a three-storey building, housing a school collapsed, trapping more than 100 persons, including pupils.

The ill-fated building was located on the crowded Ita-Faaji Street within the heart of Lagos Island.

Thousands of residents and many emergency workers gave early death toll figures at eight or nine. while Lagos State Government later confirmed that 20 people died in the Ita-Faaji building collapse and, thereafter, set up a five-man panel to investigate the immediate and remote causes of the incident.

Commissioner for Physical Planning and Urban Development in Lagos, Rotimi Ogunleye, inaugurated the panel last Tuesday.

He said the panel’s terms of reference included proffering remedial measures to stem further building collapse, as well as determining the level of negligence on the part of the developer or owner and the role of the state government.

Meanwhile, the state government has urged occupants of marked distressed buildings across the state to immediately vacate them, pending the arrival of the demolition team of Lagos State Building Control Agency (LASBCA).

Also, relief and resettlement centres have been opened to accommodate those affected.

Commissioner for Physical Planning and Urban Development, Rotimi Ogunleye, made the appeal, yesterday, just as a distressed three-storey building located on 50, Kakawa Street, Campos, Lagos Island collapsed without any casualty.

Ogunleye said: “The building in question had been identified as distressed by the officers of the LASBCA, and all the necessary statutory notices had been duly served. It was one of the defective structures marked for removal by the agency.

“Fortunately, occupants had been evacuated before the incidents occurred. Immediately, the Lagos State Rescue Team and LASBCA were alerted and they moved to site promptly to check all adjoining buildings, so as to evacuate the occupants to avoid any further hazard.”

Already 25 buildings have been removed by LASBCA as the government has stepped up measures to rid the state of distressed buildings, to prevent loss of life and property.

In a related development, as part of efforts to provide succour to victims of the collapsed and demolished buildings on Lagos Island, the state government has reiterated its readiness to accommodate affected residents at the state Relief/Resettlement Centre, Igando in Alimosho Local Government Area.

Speaking during a tour of the resettlement centre in Igando, at the weekend, the Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Kehinde Bamigbetan, said Governor Akinwumi Ambode has approved that those affected as a result of the ongoing demolition of defective buildings be resettled at Relief Centre, in line with international best practices.

To this end, Bamigbetan said the LASEMA’s Resettlement Camp/Relief Centre will accommodate about 500 displaced persons from today.

He said the exercise is part of the state government’s efforts to ensure the effect of loss on the victims is mitigated to the barest minimum.

Also, on his part, LASEMA’s General Manager, Adesina Tiamiyu, said the camp would be open for three months, after which the government would review the need for an extension.

Tiamiyu said a medical team would arrive at the centre later yesterday to ascertain the health status of those affected, while the Igando General Hospital will handle referrals from the camp.

The camp, it was gathered, has facilities to provide relief for affected victims, including those living with disabilities.

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