The Akwa Ibom State government has ordered a probe into the collapse of a four-storey building barely a day after the incident occurred in Uyo, the state capital.
Mr Ini Ememobong, who is the Commissioner for Information and Strategy in the state, disclosed this in a statement on Sunday.
Channels Television had reported the collapse of the building – located on Iman Street off Aka Road in Uyo – which was under construction at the time it went down on Saturday evening.
A day after the tragedy, Governor Udom Emmanuel of Akwa Ibom directed the Commissioner for Works and Fire Service to immediately set up a panel of inquiry to investigate the incident.
“The panel is to conclude its work within one month, and if it is found that the collapse of the building was as a result of any acts of negligence or wrongdoing, those responsible will face the full wrath of the law,” Ememobong said in the statement.
The state government confirmed that at least one of the victims trapped in the rubble was killed, although it did not give a specific figure.
“The Governor, Mr Udom Emmanuel has expressed his deepest condolences to the families whose relatives were trapped and eventually died in the collapsed building, while wishing the survivors a quick recovery.
“He has directed the Commissioner for Health to immediately take over the management of the survivors,” the commissioner added.
The governor commended all the first responders, rescue and security agencies, government officials, voluntary organisations, and residents who took part in the rescue operation that lasted several hours.
He specifically appreciated the construction companies that donated their equipment in the process of the rescue exercise to aid the operation.
This is the first building collapse in Uyo since the Reigners Church incident in December 2016.