The Lagos State Building Control Agency (LASBCA) has embarked on a crucial mission to partially demolish distressed high-rise structures in both Lagos Island and Mushin. This initiative is driven by the agency’s unwavering commitment to prevent potential building collapses and ensure the safety of the city’s inhabitants. In this comprehensive article, we delve into the details of this significant undertaking, shedding light on the reasons behind it and its implications for the affected communities.
Ensuring Safety: LASBCA’s Noble Mission
LASBCA’s Vigilant Oversight
LASBCA, under the able leadership of Mr. Olaopa Olusoji, Director of Enforcement, has taken proactive measures to address the looming danger posed by severely distressed buildings in Lagos. This mission exemplifies the agency’s commitment to safeguarding the lives and properties of residents in the city.
Assessment and Partial Demolition
The LASBCA officials, led by Mr. Olusoji, conducted a meticulous assessment of these distressed structures before initiating partial demolitions. This crucial step ensures that only the buildings deemed extremely hazardous are targeted, preventing unnecessary disruption for property owners.
A Glimpse of the Action
Lagos Island: Oke-Arin Street Market
The LASBCA team descended upon the bustling Oke-Arin Street Market, alerting residents and traders to the imminent danger posed by severely distressed four-storey buildings. To mitigate the risk to human life, they began the process of partial demolition on numbers 18, 19, and 21, along with an unnumbered two-storey building.
Toking for Compliance
The term ‘toking’ was coined to describe the process of partial demolition by perforation of walls to enforce compliance, either to stop work or evacuate a building. This meticulous approach ensures that structural integrity is maintained while addressing safety concerns.
Resident and Trader Cooperation
Residents and traders in the affected area displayed exemplary cooperation during this operation. They swiftly removed their belongings and wares from the buildings, recognizing the imminent danger and the importance of compliance with LASBCA’s directives.
In a heartwarming incident, LASBCA’s prompt action led to the resuscitation of a fainting female tenant. This episode underscores the critical nature of LASBCA’s mission in preserving human life.
Personal Stories: Residents’ Perspectives
Mr. Rabiu Jamiu’s Testimony
Mr. Rabiu Jamiu, a civil servant residing at 21, Oke-Arin St., shared his experience of evacuating the building. Despite the challenges of leaving without an alternative residence, he expressed relief at having moved out safely with his family. His poignant words remind us of the unpredictable nature of building collapses and the paramount importance of proactive measures.
Uche Amuche, a retired security guard who sells toilet paper in one of the shops, revealed that they had received information suggesting the buildings would remain intact until 2024. This misinformation led them to pay rent and invest in their businesses, highlighting the need for vigilant monitoring of buildings from the foundation stage to prevent future demolitions.
Oke-Arin Community Development Association
Mr. Abayom Aboaba, the Chairman of the Oke-Arin Community Development Association, extended his support for the demolition efforts, emphasizing that it was conducted with the residents’ safety in mind. His endorsement underscores the significance of community involvement in such critical endeavors.
Mushin: Garba Musa Street and Beyond
Garba Musa Street
In Mushin, LASBCA partially demolished a four-storey building on Garba Musa Street, attracting the attention of neighbors and sympathizers. The agency’s decisive action here demonstrates its commitment to addressing potential hazards throughout Lagos.
Sarki St., Idiaraba
At 41 Sarki St., Idiaraba, in Mushin, a massive four-storey building raised concerns as beams and pillars showed signs of structural failure. This precarious situation led some occupants to hastily pack their belongings, underlining the unpredictability of building collapses.
Layi Oyekanmi Street, Ilasa
LASBCA also focused its efforts on Layi Oyekanmi Street, Ilasa, in Mushin, where two separate three-floor buildings faced partial demolition. This proactive approach ensures that potential hazards are swiftly addressed.
LASBCA’s Message: Prioritizing Safety
The Role of Statutory Notices
Mr. Olaopa Olusoji, LASBCA’s Director of Enforcement, emphasized that the agency’s actions followed the service of statutory notices. The goal of partial demolition is to expedite the evacuation of residents to prevent calamity.
A Commitment to Saving Lives
In the face of the unpredictable nature of building collapses, LASBCA has chosen not to take chances. Mr. Olusoji affirmed that anyone residing in such hazardous conditions is at risk. Thus, the agency’s primary focus is to save lives, irrespective of any disagreements over timelines.
In conclusion, LASBCA’s ongoing mission to partially demolish distressed buildings in Lagos Island and Mushin underscores the agency’s dedication to ensuring the safety of the city’s inhabitants. The cooperation of residents, traders, and community leaders is pivotal in achieving this mission. By taking proactive steps to address potential hazards, LASBCA continues to be a beacon of safety in Lagos, prioritizing lives above all else.