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Lagos begins demolition of collapsing building

Lagos begins demolition of collapsing building

Lagos begins demolition of collapsing building

The Lagos Physical Planning Development Authority on Tuesday began the demolition of the building at 3, Ajayi Street, Ogba, Lagos.

The residents were hurriedly evacuated on Sunday when it was reported that the walls of their building were cracking.

The demolition started around 5pm after the residents were allowed to pick their remaining belongings.

The residents had complained on Monday that they were not allowed to pack some of their belongings before government officials sealed off the building.

Meanwhile, some of the residents have appealed to the state government to assist them.

One of the occupants, Henry Igbinidu, said, “Yesterday (Monday) evening some officials of the Physical Planning and Development agency came and opened the premises. They gave us about one hour to pack out some of the belongings we still had inside. They came today (Tuesday) again and allowed those who could not pack theirs to do so.

“But it’s sad that the government officials did not even bother about our plight. There are a lot of us living in that building. They could not even consider the fact that we have been displaced.

“The state government is expected to be responsible for the welfare of its people.”

Another resident, who identified herself simply as Joy, said it would not be easy for them to settle on time considering the urgency with which they were evacuated.

She said, “If we are in a good country, government would have provided something to cushion the effect of the pains we are going through.

“Some of us have had to put up with friends, family and neighbours.

“It will take a while before our life is balanced again. This morning, one of our neighbours was agitated and we sensed that she was not feeling fine because of the accommodation problem.”

Another resident, Julius Godfrey, said although the government could not be blamed for “our plight”, it is government’s responsibility to help citizens in distress.

Godfrey said, “We all know how things work in this country. Government only wants to be perceived as caring about the people but not actually showing that it cares.”

However, an official of the state Ministry of Justice, Mr. Olumide Homer-William, told our correspondent on Tuesday that residents of “doomed” buildings were not usually government’s priority.

“Usually, the landlords or owners of such buildings are the ones that are usually considered for compensation when such buildings are sealed for demolition. That is also usually subject to whether the building has a Certificate of Occupancy or not,” he said.



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