Admin l Thursday, March 30, 2017
IKEJA, Lagos, Nigeria – More than three years after a building collapsed at Synagogue Church of All Nations, SCOAN, more revelations have been made as to the cause of sudden collapse of the building.
This time coming from a Structural Engineer, Mr. Oreoluwa Fadayomi who testified in court that the six-storey guest house collapsed due to structural defects occasioned by cheating on materials deployed during construction.
Fdayomi, who is the seventh prosecution witness made the statement during the trial of Trustees of SCOAN and the two engineers involved in the construction of the collapsed guesthouse, which led to the death of about 116 persons, mostly South Africans on September 12, 2014.
The SCOAN Trustees, the two engineers, Messrs Oladele Ogundeji and Akinbela Fatiregun and their companies, Hardrock Construction and Engineering Company and Jandy Trust Limited were arraigned before Justice Lateef Lawal-Akapo on 111-count charge for their involvement in the collapsed building.
The 111 count charges preferred against the defendants by the Lagos State Government borders on criminal negligence, manslaughter and failure to obtain building permit.
The witness who is a registered civil engineer of Council of Regulation of Engineering in Nigeria (COREN) told the court presided over by justice Lawal-Akapo that the building do not have rigid strong points preferably at the two end s of the structure.
According to him the collapsed building lacked joins adding that the strong points were missing in the structure.
Fadayomi, who graduated from the University of Lagos held that, the reinforcement was lower than what is expected of such robust structure adding that the bottom reinforcement he and his team members met as the site of collapsed building was different from what was in the structural drawing.
”we find out that the beams were slender for the purpose it was meant for”.
The witness who was led in evidence by the lead counsel of the state, Miss T.K. Shitta-Bey, told the court that, two of the columns were under reinforced and that all the ground columns were slender.
“my lord based on the investigation, myself and my team members conducted revealed that, the structural system of the collapsed building was inadequate, adding that the design of the building also aided the collapse since what was obtained in the design drawing was different from what we saw at collapsed site.
After fadayomi’s testimony, lead counsel for the defence, Chief Lateef Fagbemi (SAN) requested for an adjournment to enable the defence prepare for cross-examination of the witness.
Justice Lawal-Akapo, subsequently adjourned the matter till April 20 for continuation of trial.