By Olasunkanmi Akoni & Monsuru Olowoopejo
Lagos—FEW days after the Itafaji building collapse in which no fewer than 10 persons, including school children died, there was confusion in the polity, yesterday, following reports that fresh building collapse on Lagos Island, with people trapped.
However, officials of Lagos State Building Control Agency, LASBCA and Lagos State Emergency Management Authority, LASEMA, have doused tension and debunked the report as false.
The rumours, which had gone wide on social media along with videos of a collapsed building on 16 Egerton Square, Oke-Arin, Lagos Island, where several people were said to been trapped in the rubble, generated confusion among residents as different versions of the report went viral.
Some national dailies, excluding Vanguard, reported that the building that the building caved in during the demolition of adjacent building in the ongoing demolition of defective buildings on the Island.
However, LASEMA General Manager, Adeshina Tiamiyu said the reports were not true. ”What happened was that during the demolition of one of the marked distressed buildings on Egerton Square, Oke-Arin, Lagos, some of the scavengers who thronged the site got trapped in the rubble of the controlled collapsed building, injuring some of them in the process. Two persons were injured in the process.”
It was however, gathered that four people were seriously affected, one of the victims had his legs badly damaged.
An eyewitness, Mr. Akin Adeoye, said: “The incident happened when officials of Lagos State Building Control Agency, were demolishing one of the marked distressed buildings and a part of the building being demolished fell on some people at the base of the building and people got injured in the process.”
Another resident, Akeem Owolabi, said that while the building was being pulled down by officials of LASBCA, some scavengers sneaked into the barricaded premises to remove doors on the ground floor and in the process the falling part of the building collapsed on them.
The residents stated that four of the scavengers sustained injuries and were rushed to the hospital for treatment.
Number of demolished distressed buildings rises to 21.
Also, LASBCA officials who were at the scene said there was no collapsed building but while pulling down a structure, a scavenger tried to pick up something and was injured in the process.
Yesterday’s demolitions have increased the number of distressed structures removed by the state government to 21 out of the 80 marked for demolition on the Island alone.
The four demolished buildings were located on the following streets: 2, Olushi Street by Swamp, Obadina Street, 30A Isale Agbede Street and 36 Isale Agbede.