Sanwo-Olu suspends LASBCA boss as death toll of Ikoyi building collapse rises to 14

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Sanwo-Olu plans to set up an independent panel to probe the circumstances of the collapse.

Lagos State governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has suspended the General Manager of the Lagos State Building Control Agency (LASBCA), Gbolahan Oki, for an indefinite period.

The suspension, announced on Tuesday, November 2, 2021, is as a direct result of the 21-storey building that collapsed in Ikoyi on Monday, November 1.

Nine people have been found alive under the rubble, but 14 people have been brought out dead, according to the Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Gbenga Omotoso.

The government also announced on Tuesday it will set up an independent panel to probe the circumstances of the collapse.

Members of the panel will be picked from professional bodies including the Nigeria Institute of Architects (NIA), Nigerian Institute of Town Planners (NITP), and Nigeria Society of Engineers (NSE).

Numerous reports have emerged since the incident on Monday to suggest that the collapse of the under-construction building was a disaster waiting to happen.

A structural consultant for the building withdrew from the project last year, expressing concerns about construction errors.

In a leaked letter shared widely online, the firm, Prowess Engineering Limited, said it could only fully guarantee the integrity of the two adjoining buildings for the planned luxury property.

A news story that also quoted a source last year reported that the project was halted by the government over suspected building code violations.

When he visited the site of the collapse on Tuesday, the deputy governor, Dr Obafemi Hamzat, confirmed that the project was sealed for a few months last year.

“They were making corrective actions when this (collapse) happened,” he said.

Omotoso said in his statement that there will be no cover-up in the search for the truth of what happened to the building.

“If anybody is found to have been indicted, he or she will face the law,” he said.

The commissioner also called on all developers and property owners to adhere strictly to all building codes and planning regulations to ensure the safety of lives and property.

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