The Lagos State Government says the developers of the three-storey building which collapsed in Ilasa on Thursday are responsible for the tragic incident.
Three people were killed and 19 injured in the collapse which occurred around 2 pm.
The government, however, said the tragedy would have been avoided if the developers had not decided to criminally unseal a stop work order and continue construction.
The Commissioner for Physical Planning and Urban Development, Wasiu Anifowose, said this after an assessment of the site of the collapse, according to a statement by the Chief Public Affairs Officer of his ministry, Mr Olubukonla Nwonah.
The commissioner said the building was disapproved and sealed off by officials of the Lagos State Building Control Agency (LASBCA), but the developers illegally broke the seal to continue work.
He said, “This particular building had been monitored and sealed off. Our officers had come back to monitor for compliance but they were prevented by hoodlums from carrying out their statutory responsibilities
“Yesterday, before the collapse, our officials were there again but were chased back to the office to reinforce when this tragedy happened.
“We had actually served all the necessary statutory stop work notices and this is evident in our records, that the building was sealed off, but this developer broke the seal twice and continued with the illegal development and this is the result of the illegality.”
The commissioner explained that the building had been sealed off because LASBCA officials discovered that the materials on the site were substandard and the developers had no development permit to embark on the construction.
Anifowose warned developers against breaking seals on buildings or ignoring stop work orders as doing that is criminal and dangerous.
He lamented the rate of building collapses in Lagos, adding, “Despite deploying officers to monitor development to prevent such ugly occurrences, some wicked, irresponsible and unscrupulous developers still carry out nefarious illegality.”