By Maduka Nweke
Following yet another building collapse in Lagos earlier this week, experts in the built environment have knocked the government authorities for their lackadaisical approach to dealing with building collapse in the country.
Lamenting the most recent building collapse at Onipanu area of Lagos, they told PropertyMart that it was high time the punishment for collapse buildings be meted to government authorities in charge of monitoring, supervising and evaluating building construction in the country.
Speaking on the recent building collapse, immediate past National President of Nigeria Institute of Builders, Mr. Kunle Awobodu, said government should set up a committee that should be inspecting building from stage to stage and not hesitate to pull down anyone seen to have signs of caving in.
Awobodu noted that government giving kid gloves to use of quacks for high rise buildings has remained the bane of these catastrophes in the built environment. According to him, the building profession has become an all comers come adding that it is not same with other professions in the country.
He noted that barely just two weeks a church building under construction collapsed opposite Number 17, Cardoso Street, off Martins Street in Mushin, exactly at about 1.07am at Oke Arin street, off Shyllon Ilupeju but details could not be ascertained at press time. The Alpha Cobra team of Lagos State Emergency at Onipanu enroute Oke Arin street off shyllon Ilupeju is one issue too many.
The Permanent Secretary, Lagos State Emergency Management Agency, LASEMA, Dr Oluwafemi Oke-Osanyintolu, confirmed the development though express information about the building are still not yet enough to ascertain what really happened.
Speaking to Coordinator of Ikotun/Igando cell of BCPG, Mrs Oluranti Okusaga, he called on government to be responsible and act in order to curtail menace of building collapse, noting that many people have developed the habit of engaging quacks during construction.? “Before you build, consult professionals. Your safety is important and not cost, “she said, adding that more building are still going to collapse in the metropolis.
Another professional, Olaniyan olajide, from Badagry cell, said that buildings would not collapse on paper, noting that influx of urban slums has contributed to the menace. He urged government, professionals and people in the private sector to join hands in the crusade against structural failures. He also made case for law that would compel adoption of building manual as part of document required for facilities management of structures.
Chairman, Building Collapse Prevention Guild (BCPG), Lagos State chapter, Mr. Solomon Ogunseye, decried the spate of building collapse in Nigerian cities, especially Lagos, calling on government to ensure that professionals are involved inbuilding project.
According to him, time has come to allow professionals to monitor building construction sites to ensure that contractors adhere to building drawings/designs as approved. This, he said would help to reduce collapse of buildings drastically.