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Lagos school fence collapses, kills two children

Samat Saheed and an unidentified girl were killed when a school fence at Covenant Point Academy on Ajose Street in the Amukoko neighbourhood of Lagos State collapsed on them.Information Guide Nigeria

According to information obtained by PUNCH Metro, the three-year-old Samat was playing outside the school’s fence not far from his mother’s shop when the fence suddenly fell on them as the nine-year-old girl was crossing the street in front of the school to get to her destination.

Eyewitness Ganiyu Ayeloja told our correspondent that the proprietor of the school had been detained. Residents had reported the incident to the police because they were traumatised by what had happened.

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He said, “The police came around and they arrested the owner of the school building. The building has no pillars, they just stacked blocks. The building was not well structured at all; there was no wiring, no pillar, and nothing to hold the building together that’s why it fell easily.JAMB Result

“It is unfortunate that the two children were around that area when it collapsed. One of the children’s parents had a shop close to the school building, that was why he was there and his parents were immediately alerted.

“The Oba of Ijora land was called to the incident yesterday and everyone is sympathising with the deceased families. People from the Lagos State Building Control Agency came to inspect the building this morning (Sunday).”

He said, “The wall in front of the school just fell on both of them. The girl who died was sent on an errand to that street, so no one knew her parents there but she was taken to the hospital after the incident and it wasn’t until nighttime when her parents started looking for her that they were informed of her death.”

Reacting to the development, the immediate Past President of the Nigerian Institute of Building, Kunle Awobodu, said blocks used to construct buildings nowadays were very weak and substandard as he urged site engineers, developers, among others to desist from using substandard materials.

He said, “This is quite unfortunate. Those of us in the construction industry have laid emphasis on the threat of natural force or pressure on buildings, to withstand such natural pressure especially in an area that is exposed to strong winds, there is a need to introduce columns.

“Pillars are referred to as reinforced columns to enable fences to withstand the natural force being generated by the wind. Constructing coping is necessary on top of these fences so that persistent rainfall does not have an extreme impact on the stability of the fence.

“Many of the blocks used to construct buildings nowadays are very weak and substandard; they are usually six inches and 150ml in thickness which is unable to withstand wind pressure that makes it important for all of us to be more vigilant.

“What has happened shows that the stability of the fence is crucial to avoid calamities of this nature. This is not the first time a fence has collapsed and taken lives, so urgent attention should be drawn to it.

“It’s a warning for landlords, developers, and building owners to construct fences that will adequately protect the habitat and property,” Awobodu said.

PUNCH Metro had reported a series of building and structural collapses that claimed the lives of residents in the state.

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Emediong Ekpe

Emediong Ekpe is a graduate of English. A professional Sports journalist/analyst, and a spoken word artist. He is passionate about decimating information and putting smiles on people's faces via news writing.

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