The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) has officially called off the Search and Rescue Operations at the site of the collapsed building in Jabi, Abuja, as it confirmed one person dead and six injured.
Mr Mustapha Maihaja made the official confirmation on Saturday in Abuja to clarify the conflicting figures on the numbers of death and those injured from the unfortunate incident.
Maihaja officially called off the rescue operation after the Search and Rescue team confirmed that there was no remaining body buried under the rubbles of the collapsed building.
He said that one of the six injured persons was in critical condition and was receiving adequate medical attention.
Maihaja said that professionals were deployed to the scene, trained personnel and facilities were also mobilized to ensure a thorough job.
“The incidence happened unannounced, the FCT Emergency Management Agency that is responsible responded promptly.
“All other stakeholders brought their support to assist them and a good work has been done to rescue those that were trapped.
“It is an uncompleted building that was abandoned for a long time and I was made to understand that there were no people living there, only the illegal occupants were there.
“Seven people were brought out, one was certified dead, one severely wounded among those injured
“This is a professional job, professionals were deployed here. They professionally combed the whole site and they could not find any other than what they were able to get.
“I think when a professional speak we should respect their opinion,’’ Maihaja said.
Those injured were immediately rushed to the Gwarinpa General Hospital for treatment after which they were referred to Zankli Hospital, Jabi.
The corpse of the victim has, however, been deposited at the Asokoro General Hospital.
To avoid reoccurrences of such unfortunate incidences, some stakeholders have called for the need for professionalism and proper inspection of buildings under constructions by the relevant agencies.
Speaking on the issue, Mr Agboola Abolade of the Council for the Regulation of Engineering in Nigeria (COREN), called for the need to engage professionals in construction to avoid unfortunate incidences as a collapse.
He explained that from the inspection on the site it was very likely that the kind of concrete mix that was used in constructing must have been below the standard specified in the design.
“By looking at the nature of the rubbles we have here, you can see that it is likely that the kind of concrete mix used was below the standard.
“If the mix was done properly we should have had a partial collapse.
“Even if the foundation gave way, other parts of the building could have been standing.
“Normally, since the building has been abandoned for a long time the concrete was supposed to get stronger over the years due to the incurring process of water and air,’’ Abolade said.