Victims of Ipaja gas explosion urges Lagos to speed up intervention
Six months after the gas explosion that rocked Baruwa, Iyana Ipaja area of Lagos State, some of the affected victims are still in pain and yet to get back their bearings due to the devastating loss of lives and properties.
They are therefore calling on the state government to speedily process the compensation it promised them in order to relocate to more habitable houses.
No fewer than five lives, 25 buildings, 16 shops and a private school building among others were lost to the explosion, which rocked the area on October 8, 2020.
It would be recalled that the explosion occurred at about 6.20 am at Candos Road, Baruwa Inside when a Liquefied Petrol Gas/cooking gas tanker, which was discharging at the Best Roof Plant Station, exploded.
Sources had traced the cause of the explosion to the station’s power generator, which was supplying power while the tanker was discharging products into the storage tank. The explosion threw people nearby and the discharging LPG tanker across the road, thus exacerbating the fire.
Speaking with The Guardian yesterday, one of the victims, Mr. Wahab Bello who lost two of his tenants, three tenement houses, eleven shops and other valuables, said his family has been forced to find shelter in a nearby Mosque since the unfortunate incident.
He explained that it has become so difficult for his family to survive on a daily basis.
Bello stated the state government had promised to assist the victims but it appeared that time was running out on the fulfillment of the intervention.
He said, “They asked us to bring some documents, we have taken the documents to them in Alausa and since we expected that they would call us but they haven’t.”
“We need the state government to act fast. My children and myself have been sleeping in the mosque. Other people that could have help, their shops were also affected. My wife who was a fashion designer, her machines also got burnt in the accident as well as properties of my tenants.”
In a petition addressed to the governor of Lagos State, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, the lawyer to members of the Unity Community Development Association, Baruwa Ipaja, Femi Agbaje lamented that about two years ago the community had wrote a letter to the government pleading against the erection of the gas plant due to the fact that the area was densely populated.
However, the community said, the gas explosion was a result of negligence on the part of government agencies to act on the matter stressing that the liability of loss of lives and properties lies on the government.
Agbaje who is also a lawyer to Mr. Bello urged the government to compensate Bello with the sum of N700 million for the loss of property and income.
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