Collapsed SCOAN Guest House: Expert Exposes “Mischievous” Report By LASG

scoan building collapes

Scoan Building collapes

Defendants in the case of the collapsed Synagogue Church Guest house closed their case at the weekend with the cross examination of their last witness in a Lagos High Court sitting at Igbosere on Friday 20th December 2019.

During resumed proceedings, the court heard further evidence that the mode of collapse of the church guest house had no characteristics of a building which collapsed due to structural defects.

Professor Patrick Nwankwo stated this while being crossed examined by the Lagos State Director of Public Prosection, Mr Yequob Oshoala.

Nwankwo, a Professor of Structural Engineering and Construction Materials, gave his expert analysis as a witness at the instance of Engr Oladele Ogundeji, who is facing trial for the collapsed building as its Supervising Engineer.

“Any defective building – whether emanating from under or over reinforcement or poor constructional materials – will have a ductile or gradual type of collapse,” he explained.

“This was not the case with the collapsed Synagogue church guest house. The frames, beams, columns would not all have collapsed at the same time; it can only happen by some external forces,” he revealed.

While responding to questions from the DPP, Professor Nwankwo said he was motivated to investigate the collapsed Synagogue church building due to its unusual mode of collapse, coupled with his professional and academic concern.

“I wanted to ensure any reports I submitted to the court were thorough and did not compromise the integrity of my profession,” he explained.

Professor Nwankwo faulted the initial report presented to the court by Lagos State Government – which relied heavily on projections from Orion Design Software – which suggested structural failure caused the collapse.

As an expert in that particular software, Nwankwo revealed the interpretation presented to the court in its earlier hearings was “completely wrong” and could even be termed “mischievous”.

“Since the calculations were wrong, the report’s findings cannot be relied upon,” he explained, adding that the report he submitted actually met the “required code of practice in Nigeria”.

Earlier in the cross examination by Mr Oluseye Diyan, Chief Efe Akpofure SAN and Mrs Titi Akinlawon SAN, the erudite scholar insisted that the construction of the building met with appropriate international standards guiding the industry.

The building, which tragically collapsed on September 12th 2014, served as a guest-house for foreign pilgrims visiting TB Joshua’s popular church in Ikotun-Egbe.

Justice Lateef Lawal-Akapo adjourned the case to January 24, 2020

Ihechukwu Njoku is a freelance Nigerian journalist…

Building Collapse: T.B. Joshua comments on persecution

tb joshua scoan

Prophet T.B. Joshua

“In my own case, persecution has always been a tonic to my anointing. The more the persecution we receive, the greater the opportunity we have to move closer to God for strength and renewal, knowing that if gold must be gold, it must pass through fire.
Glory be to God – the more we are persecuted, the more we attract God’s attention and commitment. The extent of His care and the strength of His might in our lives weaken and frustrate our adversaries. When God gives you strength, He also sees you through any obstacle.”

– Prophet T.B. Joshua

ACP– Aircraft Flew Over Synagogue’s Building Before Tumbling Down

An Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP), Mr Alaba Haruna, on Friday 11, May 2018 told a Lagos High Court that an aircraft flew over Synagogue Church of All Nations building at Ikotun-Egbe, a Lagos suburb,  just before it collapsed on Sept. 12, 2014, killing 116 people.

He said one of his patrol teams observed an aircraft flying low over the church and other buildings in the premises.

Haruna testified before Justice Lateef Lawal-Akapo of an Igbosere High Court on Lagos Island as a defence witness in the trial of the registered trustees of the church and four others.

The church opened its defence in a one-count charge of building without approval brought against it by the Lagos State Directorate of Public Prosecutions (DPP) following the dismissal of its no-case submission on March 8, 2016.

The other defendants are the two engineers who built the building: Messrs Oladele Ogundeji and Akinbela Fatiregun, and their companies, Hardrock Construction and Engineering Company and Jandy Trust Ltd.

Apart from the trustees’ one-count charge, the other defendants are facing a 110-count bordering on involuntary manslaughter.

Newsmen report that Haruna, Area Commander of the Eastern Ports Command, Port Harcourt, Rivers, was the Divisional Police Officer at Ikotun-Egbe at the time the building collapsed.

He was led in evidence by the trustees counsel, Mr Oluseye Diyan.

Haruna said: “On that fateful day on Sept.12, 2014 at 12.30 p.m., there was a radio communication from the police control room at Ikeja that they were receiving calls from the public of an aircraft flying at low altitude over the church.

“I was directed by the Area Command to confirm the incident and monitor the aircraft’s activities.

“I wanted to go out and direct my men to watch out for the aircraft when I received another report of an airplane flying at a very low altitude. I went outside but I couldn’t see it, by that time it had gone.

“I received a call later from Insp. Lucky Ugbaja, stationed at the church that one of the church’s buildings had collapsed.”

According to him, the radio room had earlier radioed the Police Airport Command to confirm whether it was carrying out any activity in the church vicinity.

Haruna said when he arrived at the church’s premises there was a large crowd and the few policemen there were trying to manage the situation.

He said onlookers kept trooping in and the crowd spilled to the roads outside the church, causing serious gridlock.

“We were overwhelmed,” Haruna told the judge, adding that he called for more policemen and were provided.

According to him, the floors of the collapsed building were lying one on the other, ” the church members and others at the scene were engaged in rescue operations.

“Those I met there were church worshipers; they were bringing out so many people from under the rubble. Most of the victims were alive. Some were injured, some were not.

“Later the Red Cross, Life Savers, National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA) arrived and joined us in the rescue.”

He said the rescue mission lasted about seven days.

During cross-examination by the prosecutor, Dr Babajide Martins, Haruna insisted that he could not recall any instance when LASEMA officials or the then Commissioner for Physical Planning, Mr Toyin Ayinde, were prevented by the church members from gaining access to the site of the collapsed building.

He said: “Apart from the LASEMA GM who said he had a herculean task passing through the crowd, no other had problems passing through.

When Martins asked him why he concluded that the rescuers were church members or worshipers, Haruna said: “Commonsense suggests that they were.”

Following the prosecution’s application for an adjournment, Justice Lawal-Akapo adjourned further proceedings until June 28.

NAN