The Lagos State Government on Friday began the demolition of marked dilapidated buildings in Lagos Island in Lagos few days after the building collapse that killed about 14 persons on Lagos Island in Lagos.
The state government had earlier earmarked about 140 building for demolition on Lagos Island. 29 of the dilapidated buildings are expected to be demolished today (Friday).
It would be recalled that a building which housed a nursery and primary school came down without warning on Wednesday. The three-storey building was said to have been marked for demolition last year.
The state governor Akinwunmi Ambode said the government faced opposition by owners of the houses.
“As you can see, some of the buildings have been marked for demolition,” he said during his visit to the scene of the building collapse.
“We get resistance from landlords.”
“We have gotten to ground zero,” added Kehinde Adebayo, a spokesman for the Lagos State Emergency Management Agency. “The debris has been cleared.
“All those trapped have been evacuated and the rescue operation has ended,” he told AFP. Final casualty figures were still being compiled and would be announced later, he said.
To avert crisis, especially loss of lives, Lagos State government on Thursday said that 149 distressed buildings have been penciled down for demolition.
The Commissioner for Physical Planning and Urban Development, Mr. Rotimi Ogunleye, stated this while providing updates on the activities of his ministry in the last one year at the ongoing Ministerial Press Briefing to mark the third anniversary of Governor Akinwunmi Ambode.
According to him, in a systematic approach to curtail occurrences of building collapse, 149 distressed buildings were identified at different locations of which 40 have been removed, while the next phase of 38 of the structurally defective structures have been earmarked for removal.
He added that after the completion of the demolition of the 38 defective structures, others would follow suit to safeguard lives and property.
“With regards to illegal, unsafe, non-conforming developments, the activities of unscrupulous developers continue to pose a lot of challenges to government.
“However, all hands are on deck to control their operations by continuous monitoring and enforcement as well as utilising the whistle blowing policy, which provides an avenue for stakeholders to expose any kind of information or development activity that is deemed illegal, unethical or non-conforming.”
He further said to engender greater efficiency, the physical planning and building control regulations 2005 have been reviewed and now before the state House of Assembly for necessary action.
He disclosed that to clear the backlog of applications and encourage regularisation of developments without permit, the Ministry has provided a window of opportunity with six months amnesty from March 1 to August 31, 2018.
Ogunleye said within the period, owners and developers of existing structures are expected to regularise their developments.
“It is to be noted that penal fees which should be paid on Building Assessment Charges would be waived during this period. Developers and owners are enjoined to take advantage of this rare opportunity to obtain permits and certificate of fitness on their developments.
“I would like to use this medium to introduce to the public and premium service to fast track the grant of planning permit for applicants who require the document as collateral to obtain funds.
This service affords applicants the opportunity to obtain their planning permit within 10 working days after pre-screening. This is however at a charge for the premium service.”
The Commissioner also revealed that to prevent imminent collapse and regenerate Lagos into a befitting megacity the state is planning to redevelop 100 slum settlements across the state.