#BounceExclusive: Who Is Hiding Lagos Collapsed Buildings Forensic Reports?
Husbands were searching for their wives; parents were looking for their children; relatives looked helplessly as their loved ones were trapped in the rubble.
By the time the dust was settled, the lives of 10 people were cut short while several others were injured.
The incident, which occurred at No 3 Massey Street Lagos Island on July 25, remains one that residents of the area will not forget in a hurry.
Among the dead is an 11-year-old boy whose body was recovered at about midnight.
Relatives of victims took the bodies in auto rickshaw, popularly referred to as Keke to perform burial rites.
It was not clear what caused the collapse, but many of the residents speculated that a mast installed on the four-storey building two weeks before the incident may have flicked the trigger.
Group Head of Operations, Lagos State Infrastructure Maintenance and Regulatory Agency (LASMIRA), Olusegun Odusagun, while speaking on the incident, said the mast operators did not obtain the relevant permit and approval before installing the mast.
One Collapse, Too Many
Buildings collapsing within the Lagos metropolis have been on the increase.
These sad incidents been attributed to poor quality of materials and contractors’ tendencies to cut corners.
The latest incident occurred barely two months after one person was killed and several others were badly injured when a three-storey building under construction collapsed at Richard Abimbola street, Ilasamaja area of Lagos State.
Few days after the incident, two people lost their lives while several others mostly construction workers, were injured when another three-storey building under construction suddenly sank on Daddy Alaja Street, Oke Arin in the Idumota area of the state.
In the spate of five months, four building collapse incidents were recorded in Lagos State.
It is however baffling that no arrest or prosecution has been made so far despite attributing the collapse to poor quality of materials and contractors’ tendencies of cutting-corners, not following regulations.
The last time Bounce News spoke to the spokesman of the Lagos State Police Command, ASP Olarinde Famous-Cole on the incidents, he said that the no arrest was made because the police were waiting for the forensic report being carried out by the Lagos State Physical Planning.
“The Lagos State Physical Planning and Urban Development will assess the situation of things for carelessness or negligence on the part of the developers, get back to us before we start making arrest and prosecution.
“We wait for them to give us their forensic reports before we begin our investigations", he said.
“There is need for proper investigation before any arrest is made. We will soon invite some individuals and corporate bodies as regard the incidents of collapsed buildings in Lagos state.
“We have our role to play and we will do that, be rest assured”, he said.
Almost two months after that assurance, no arrest is yet to be made.
Famous Cole, who spoke to Bounce News, said the police are still waiting for the forensic reports.
"We are still waiting for Lagos State Physical Planning and Urban Development to conclude investigations, make recommendations before we make arrest.
"I still want to assure the public that as soon as the investigations are concluded, necessary actions will be taken.
"The culprits will be arrested and prosecuted no matter how long it takes, that I can assure you", he said.
The question on everyone's lips - "Will the forensic reports ever be concluded and will the dead and injured ever get justice"?
See video below of the latest collapse below.