Workers Trapped As Three-Storey Building Collapses In Ebonyi

Workers Trapped As Three-Storey Building Collapses In Ebonyi

A three-story building under construction in Abakiliki, the capital of Ebonyi State, on Tuesday night, collapsed.

The collapsed building is located adjacent to the Alex Ekwueme Federal Teaching Hospital Abakaliki (AE-FUTHA 1).

It was gathered that workers on-site are still trapped while one victim has been rescued and rushed to the hospital.

The building reportedly belongs to Oluchukwu Ukie Ezeali (P-Noble), a member representing Afikpo North East in the State House of Assembly.

The state Commissioner for Capital City and Urban Development, Hon Sunday Inyima, who briefed journalists on Wednesday morning, described the incident as sad and confirmed that one of the workers has been rescued.

Narrating the cause of the collapse, Inyima said that the structure was “illegal and did not pass the approval of the Head of Department of the Ministry,” but the owner went ahead with the building.

One of the labourers, who escaped from the collapsed building, narrated that he escaped because he went to wash his hands.

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“I was loading a bag of stones and the owner of the house was here with me, telling me to park it very well. He has finished paying us.

“The building did not give any sign that it was about to collapse. I was lucky because my tools were inside. I just said let me wash my hands here before I will go inside the building to collect my tools,” he stated.

The State Commissioner for Works, Lebechi Mbam, called on developers and homeowners to patiently follow the due process of getting approval from the concerned state ministry in order to save lives.

The state chairman of the Nigeria Society of Engineers and Chairman of Engineers Regulation Monitoring of the Council of Engineering of Nigeria (COREN), Engineer Eni Enyinnaya, described the incident as a monumental economic loss and an embarrassment to the Ebonyi State government.

Enyinnaya warned against quack engineers and added that measures would be taken to sanction the site engineers.

Efforts are ongoing to rescue the remaining workers.