This article features an eyewitness, who narrates his experience as fire burnt down sawmills in Lagos. Read through to the end to hear his narration as he was interviewed by 'BBC pidgin' in new video.
In a new video posted on social media by BBC pidgin, an individuals who was at the scene where fire burnt down Okobaba sawmills and so many shanties in ebute metta Lagos, narrates his experience on the incident.
The eyewitness being interviewed by BBC pidgin gave his name as; Ademola, and he is a worker at the sawmill that got burnt down. He's also the only person that was allowed to speak with the press according to the interviewer.
In the video, the Interviewer asked him what really happened that led to the fire?
According to Mr Ademola, the fire actually started at the neighbouring residential house where the homeowner was using to face electrical connection. But the two positive wires came in contact with each other and started up a fire, but the house owner was not available to stop it on time, and that was how fire began to rapture the building.
Photo: Mr. Mr Ademola
People around tried to stop the fire but they couldn't. And because the shanties are in close proximity to each other, the fire extended, which led to the burning down of the entire Sawmills.
He mentioned that fire service arrived a little on time, but their vehicle couldn't gain access to the main place where the fire is currently burning. But they eventually took anticipated measures which prevented the fire from extending to the part where they already are.
When asked by the interviewer to estimate the amount of money destroyed by the fire, he simply responded saying: millions of naira were lost because many machines, generators and equipment got burnt down completely.
He mentioned that the place is not meant for residential setting, but because of high rental fee in the main town, people decided to come and build there shanties here. And because they are trying to utilise space, they built the shanties very closely to each other. He mentioned that in a few months when new sawmills construction will began, people will come back and start building shanties again.
He was asked where the people slept when their Shanties got burnt down?
He responded saying; some of them just hang around till morning while others slept at the sawmill.
The interviewer mention that this is the second time fire burnt down this place. So he asked what measures they took after the first incidence to prevent such occurrences from happening again?
The young man simply responded that nothing was done by the government at all.
He also mentioned that Lagos governor was at the sene yesterday, but nothing was done for the people so far.
After watching the video, some people blame the government of Lagos for poor planning. Other people simply sympathized with the situation while other simply wonder what people were busy picking on the ground, at the scene of the incident.
Questions: do you think the government is to be blamed for this hazard?
- In your own opinion, what do you think government should do in order to avoid something like this from happening again?
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