Lagos govt to enforce demolition of distressed buildings

Dr Idris Salako, Lagos State Commissioner for Physical Planning and Urban Development, says the state government will enforce the law on the demolition of distressed buildings.

The commissioner made this known during a visit to the site of the two-storey building which collapsed in the early hours of Saturday on Freeman St. Lagos Island.

“When we capture a building as distressed, people need to be moved out immediately, which we have been doing.

“However, when you move them out, they will still come back after the officers from these emergency management agencies leave,” Salako said.

He said that the agency would soon carry out an advert which would earmark over 100 distressed houses to be demolished.

“The greed of developers, economising building materials for maximum gain also led to the easy collapse of these buildings,” he said.

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Salako said the government would be at the forefront of detecting these distressed buildings and demolish them.

Mr Oluwafemi Oke-Osanyintolu, Director-General, Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA) who was also at the site, noted that three people died while nine survived the building collapse.

Oke-Osanyintolu said that combined efforts of different emergency management agencies helped in rescuing the survivors who were being attended to medically.

“The Ministry of Physical Planning, LASEMA, the Nigeria Police Force, the Nigerian Army amongst others, helped to rescue nine people who are presently receiving medical treatment and are in the stable course,” he said.

Oke-Osanyintolu, however, said that the particular building had been marked for demolition because it failed the integrity test done on it by the Lagos State Building Control Agency (LASBCA).

“LASBCA had served the occupants quit notice and the Ministry of Physical Planning had informed the occupants to leave the building because the house was in distress.

“They, however, refused to adhere to the warnings which had resulted in the loss of lives and property,” he said.

Oke-Osanyitolu said that Gov Babajide Sanwo-Olu had made sure that the safety of lives and property remained paramount to his administration.

“There are laws and building regulations on ground to ensure the security of lives and property which people must adhere to.

“We are appealing to the people of the state to live in a responsible way and ensure that safety is paramount to what they are doing.

“In as much as the government has done the needful, our people need to abide by the rules and regulations of the state,” the LASEMA boss said.



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