The General Manager of Lagos State Building Control Agency (LASBCA), Arc. Gbolahan Oki, has again decried the alarming rate of defective structures in different parts of Lagos Island, assuring that the agency is working hand in hand with other relevant stakeholders in the built sector to restore sanity to Lagos Island and other parts of the State.
Oki, who led an enforcement gang of the agency on an inspection of buildings in some parts of Lagos Island on Thursday, disclosed that the team had to issue abatement notices to some non-confirming structures in the areas visited.
He warned inhabitants of physically-distressed structures to desist from always asking for additional weeks and months before they can vacate affected buildings when the structure is already a disaster in waiting.
His words: “Our emphasis has always been that whenever we discover that a particular building is distressed, what is expected of you is to vacate such a building immediately without waiting for any prompting from government officials because a distressed building will not give warning before it collapses”.
The General Manager said although the demolition gang of the agency usually faced the challenge of accessing some areas with the demolition equipment, it will continue to explore other available options to ensure that all marked distressed structures are safely brought down.
He also disclosed that LASBCA had demolished over 20 distressed buildings in the last three months in different parts of the State and gave an assurance that others already marked for demolition would soon be pulled down by the Agency.
Listing locations of some defective structures identified during the enforcement exercise as 25 and 26 Koilo Street, as well as 26 Atiko along Koilo on Lagos Island, the General Manager maintained that the buildings are going to be demolished within the next two weeks because they constitute a danger to the occupiers in their present state.
Oki, who had earlier paid a visit to the Palace of Oba of Lagos, HRM, Oba Rilwanu Akiolu I, to seek the consent of the traditional ruler on the enforcement exercise, said the State Government will continue to identify and demolish property that poses risks to the lives of Lagosians.
Responding, Oba Akiolu pledged his support to the government and pleaded for a more holistic approach to building control activities by nipping substandard construction in the bud from the planning stage of construction works.
He charged LASBCA to increase its staff strength so that the entire nooks and crannies of the State can feel their presence such that non-conforming construction works going on in some parts of the State can be easily and quickly discovered by officers right from inception.
During the enforcement exercise, some buildings under construction as well as those at various stages of renovation were sealed by the Agency. The affected buildings are located at 45, Enuowa Street, 42, Ricca Street and Iga Idugaran Street, all on Lagos Island.