TEARS cascaded people’s face at ikotun egbe, Lagos, when a six storey building under construction, collapsed in the premises of Synagogue Church of All Nation, SCOAN. The building belonging to Prophet T.B. Joshua church, SCOAN, reportedly collapsed around 1 pm Friday afternoon, with no fewer than 50 feared dead.
The building, according to source, was said to be initially two-storey building before the church added four floors to it to make six-storey building.
iPokeNose gathered that the building, which housed guests from all over the world and members of the church, already had so many people lodged in it before the horrific incident.
However, the exact number of casualties could not be confirmed as of the time of filing this report as there were conflicting reports from emergency agencies and eyewitnesses.
For instance, the Public Relations Officer, National Emergency Management Agency, Mr. Ibrahim Farinloye, in a phone conversation with our correspondent on Friday evening, confirmed the recovery of three dead bodies and 15 persons rescued alive.
He said, “We have recovered three dead bodies and a child of about 10 years was among them. The others were adults and one of them had his leg chopped off. Before we arrived at the scene, 15 persons had been rescued alive and taken to the hospital. But there are people still trapped in the building and rescue efforts are still ongoing.”
The General Manager, Lagos State Emergency Management Agency, Dr. Femi Oke-Osanyintolu, who could not confirm the figure of the dead victims, said 15 bodies and 20 survivors were recovered from the debris.
He said, “We have cordoned off the area and we have been able to recover 15 bodies and 20 casualties and they have been taken to the hospitals, including the General Hospital, Alimosho, but I can’t tell you the number of the dead right now. There were foreigners among the dead and those that were rescued but I didn’t count how many they were.”
Violence against press men
Every attempt to cover the incident was barred by the officials of the church.
In a related development, young men suspected to be members of the church, mobbed and assaulted a photojournalist working for NTA, smashing his camera. They also molested other reporters and individuals who tried to take pictures of the scene.
some members of the church who were at the hospital, told the nurse and the victims not to entertain any questions from journalist.
SCOAN OFFICIAL STATEMENT
The Synagogue, Church Of All Nations later gave an official communication — concerning a news story currently being reported by the media regarding an incident that happened today:
“A building, not the church auditorium as was reported. The few people that were there are being rescued. What you wish to others, God wishes to you. Nothing makes us love a person as much as praying for him. The more I love you, the more I will pray for you.”