Lagos govt says collapsed 21-storey building got approval, contradicting an earlier claim

Barely 24 hours after a Lagos State government official said only 15 floors were approved for the 21-storey building which collapsed in Ikoyi, Lagos, the deputy governor has issued a contradiction – Obafemi Hamzat, the deputy governor, said on Tuesday morning that the owner of the building got approval for 21 floors.

On Monday, Gbolahan Oki, the general manager of the Lagos State Building Control Agency (LASBCA), said the government approved 15 floors for the 21-storey building.

“He got an approval for a 15-storey building and he exceeded his limit. I am on ground here and the materials he used are so inferior and terrible,” Mr Oki had said.

But the deputy governor contradicted the claim.

“This particular one was approved for 21 floors, not 15. If you count, the second building was 14 or 15. The approval was done about three years ago, it is not something new, it is the construction that failed apparently from what we can see,” he said.

Mr Hamzat also confirmed the earlier sealing of the building by the state government over poor construction.

“It was sealed from June. It was sealed because the agency came in to do a structural test, they saw some abnormalities, so they shut it down for those things to be corrected.

“They were making corrective actions when this (collapse) happened,” Mr Hamzat said. He added that the emergency agencies are not sure of the number of people that are trapped in the building because it is not a residential building and there is no list of people that were there when it collapsed.

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