LAGOS – The Lagos State Building Control Agency (LASBCA), has promised to enforce to the letter, its statutory mandate of ensuring that anybody who breaks its Seal on stoppage of work on any building that is assessed as defective, is arrested and handed over to the police for prosecution.
Daily Independent investigation exclusively learnt, that due to the indiscriminate breaking of its official seal by ‘unscrupulous’ developers, the agency has sought and gotten approval from the Lagos State Police Command to provide more policemen to accompany its field personnel who go out to monitor on going building construction in the state.
The essence of this additional police personnel, Daily Independent further learnt, is to provide adequate protection for LASBCA officials who are usually prevented from enforcing the ‘Stop Work Order’ especially in highbrow areas.
A top official of the Ministry of Physical Planning and Urban Development who spoke Daily Independent on the condition of anonymity said that the provision of more policemen for LASBCA ‘was long overdue’ as a result of the ‘incessant’ harassment of its officials by some members of the public.
According to him, with this police backup, the agency’s officials would now be able to perform their official duties without molestation.
According to him, in some extreme cases, the LASBCA officials who go out on enforcement duties, are manhandled, while some get critically injured.
It would be recalled that most of the buildings that were marked with the red X and sealed for one form of structural defect or the other, the owners of such buildings still went on with construction.
The aftermath effect of disregarding the ‘Stop Work Order’ usually is a collapse.
He said most of these collapses could be attributed to outright disregard for constituted and official instruction for owners of defective buildings to stop work.