The Lagos State government has held a stakeholders meeting over its plan to demolish the remaining structures at the site of the collapsed twenty-one storey building at Number 20, Gerrard Road, Ikoyi, last November.
Fifty-two persons died, while many others were injured in the building which collapsed on the 1st of November, 2021.
Addressing the stakeholders, in Ikoyi, the Commissioner for Special Duties and Intergovernmental Relations, Mr Tayo Bamgbose-Martins announced that after extensive consultations, the State government had decided to use a non-explosive method to bring down the three structures to ensure the safety of the people living in the area.
He said “We have chosen a non explosive method, because even the world explosion has its own psychological effects and therefore, we try to avoid this, we’ve worked with the technical experts on this particular approach. It will be manually and labour intensive, but also mechanized, it will be time consuming, procedural, and it will not happen in a day, but it will be safe”.
According to the Commissioner, the process is also part of bringing closure to some of those affected by the very sad incident.
The Contractor who will be handling the demolition stated that the foundation of the collapsed structure was found to be faulty and that a deconstruction method would be used to pull down the
buildings at the site piece by piece, through a-four-hour day shift, while debris would be evacuated at night to prevent hazards to those living or working in the area.
The timeline for deconstructing the site of the collapsed building is between three to six months
Some of the concerns raised by the stakeholders, especially those living in the neighbourhood and those whose places of businesses are situated close to the site included, noise and dust management, lingering trauma from the impact of the collapsed building and possible hazards to their own structures.
Assuring the stakeholders that their concerns had been duly noted, the Commissioner for Physical Planning and Urban Development, Dr Idris Salako said the planned demolition would have minimal impact on other structures close by and that the site would be formally handed over to the Consultant on Thursday this week.
“The concerns raised by stakeholders, especially the residents are genuine, we believe with what the Consultant has told them and what we ourselves have planned, there would be any reason for them to worry” Dr Salako stated
In his remarks, the convener of the stakeholders’ meeting and Permanent Secretary, Lagos State Emergency Management Agency, LASEMA, Dr Femi Oke-Osanyintolu also assured the residents that their wellbeing is paramount to the Lagos State government.
“All the key stakeholders; the Lagos Safety Commission, Building Control agency, Fire and even Ambulance services, including LASEMA will be on the ground to monitor the controlled demolition, I want to assure all Lagosians, especially those living or doing business on Gerrard Road and environs to remain calm during the process, they will be safe, all safety measures will be put in place” Oke-Osanyintolu assured.