Collapsed Synagogue building had many structural defects ―COREN engineer

A structural engineer, Oreoluwa Fadayomi, on Thursday told an Ikeja High Court sitting in Lagos that the collapsed guest house  owned by the Synagogue Church of All Nations (SCOAN) which killed no fewer than 116 people mostly South Africans, collapsed due to structural defect.

The structural engineer made the revelation while giving testimony as the 7th prosecution witness in the ongoing trial of the Registered Trustees of SCOAN alongside two engineers who were involved in the construction of the collapsed guest house on September 12, 2014.

Aside SCOAN, the two engineers who are Messrs Oladele Ogundeji and Akinbela Fatiregun and their companies, Hardrock Construction and Engineering Company and Jandy Trust Limited were arraigned before Justice Lawal-Akapo on 111-count charge over their alleged involvement in the collapsed building, by the Lagos state government.

The charge borders on criminal negligence, manslaughter and failure to obtain building permit.

According to Fadayomi who is a registered civil engineer with the Council of Regulation of Engineering in Nigeria (COREN), the building did not have rigid strong points preferably at the two ends of the structure.

“The collapsed building lacked joints, strong points were missing in the structure,” the Engineer said.

The witness maintained that the reinforcement was lower than what is expected of such robust structure, insisting that the bottom reinforcement he and his team members met at the site of collapsed building was different from what was in the structural drawing.

“We found out that the beams were slender for the purpose it was meant for,” he said.

Fadayomi who was led in evidence by lawyer to the state government, Miss T.K. Shitta-Bey, informed Justice Lawal Akapo that two of the columns were under reinforced and that all the ground columns were slender.

“My lord, based on the investigation myself and my team members conducted, it was revealed that the structural system of the collapsed building was inadequate.

“The design of the building also aided the collapse since what was obtained in the design drawing was different from what we saw at the collapsed site,” he maintained

Continuation of trial on the matter has been adjourned until April 20, 2017.


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