BusinessDay

Majekodunmi faults govt, regulatory bodies’ over Ikoyi building collapse

David Majekodunmi, the state chairman of the Nigerian Institute of Architects, decried the lack of enforcement of building regulations by the government and regulatory bodies as the reason for the collapsed Ikoyi building.

Majekodunmi speaking to the media recently faulted the signage of the building construction, noting that the numbers on the construction signage showed that the same person was the consultant and the architect.

“If the regulatory bodies had seen this signboard and done the needful, maybe we would be able to know who we are accusing or who to hold responsible for this mayhem,” he said.

Meanwhile, no fewer than 20 people have been confirmed dead in the 21-storey building that collapsed on Monday, November 1, in the Ikoyi area of Lagos State.

According to an eyewitness report, the building crumbled around 3 pm when workers were on the site.

Olu Verheijen, an eyewitness who resides across the road from the building said that at about 3 pm before it collapsed, the building was vibrating.

“We initially thought it was an earthquake. So, I looked down and saw that the building had come down. That is all I know,” she said.

Read also: Sanwo-Olu suspends LASBCA boss over Ikoyi building collapse

BusinessDay had reported that about 50 people were feared trapped when the incident happened, Femi Osibona, the managing director, Fourscore Heights Limited, and the owner of the building.

Hakeem Odumosu, the Lagos State commissioner of police on Tuesday confirmed that 20 corpses had been recovered. Nine people however were reported to have been rescued alive.

The rescued persons were taken to the Lagos Island General Hospital, Marina for treatment. However, three of the rescued victims had been released to their families.

The angry family members of the victims and sympathisers were seen requesting from emergency management workers to allow members of the public to help in the recovery process to increase the chances of saving more lives.

Some of them claimed that they were not allowed to identify the bodies recovered to know if their loved ones had been found or were still trapped in the rubble.

Gbolahan Oki, the general manager of the Lagos State Building Control Agency, meanwhile told the News Agency of Nigeria that the owner of the building got approval for 15 storey-building and not 21.

Oki stated that inferior materials were used for the construction, and maintained that appropriate actions would be taken.

But in contrast to the statement of Oki, Femi Hamzat, the state deputy governor of Lagos State, during a visit to the scene on Tuesday, said the collapsed building was approved for 21-storey building three years ago.

Hamzat said that the building was sealed for four months in 2021 when the state government noticed some anomalies in the construction.

“The operation, as you can see, is going on and we will not leave until we can account for everybody. We are responsible for the people of the state; our focus is on saving lives.

“This place was sealed for about four months sometime last year from July to November because our agency came in to do structural tests and saw some anomalies and shut it down and said those things should be corrected.

“They were taking corrective actions when this happened. At the time this happened, they were not constructing, but investigations later will show what happened.

“This particular building that collapsed was approved for 21 floors three years ago not 15 floors, it’s the construction that failed, apparently,” Hamzat said,

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