“Buried Alive For 6 Hours” The Horrifying Experience Of Ibadan Collapsed Building Survivors.

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Some of the survivors of the collapsed three-storey building at Sogoye, Idi-Arere, Ibadan on Saturday narrated their ordeal in the debril while waiting for rescue effort

Rescue effort had ended at about 2am with about six people rescued and taken to the hospital.

No death was recorded from the incident.

While two survivors were moved to a private hospital in Owode, Olomi Academy, another two were moved to the University College Hospital, Ibadan.

One of the survivors, Femi Fatiregun, while narrating his ordeal said everything that happened was beyond his imagination, noting that sufficient materials were used in putting up the structure.

Narrating his ordeal to newsmen, he explained he only heard the sound of a sharp crack on a part of the wall and about looking closely, before he saw the whole structure where he was standing started caving in.

He recounted that he was buried under the debris for at least six hours, hovering between life and death and not sure of where he would end up.

He said: “My spirit told me this wasn’t normal in a twinkling of an eye, everything blacked out. When I woke up, I saw everywhere was dark. There was no breathing space whatsoever, there was no light.

“It was as if I was rescued from the grip of a lion when I was eventually brought out. I saw death but God gave me a second chance at life. I never thought I would be alive to tell my story.

“I could not do anything at the moment since the building has already collapsed. Underneath the collapsed building, were two benches, which I laid on for almost six hours.

“I was still under the debris when I received a call from my friend whom I explained the situation to and sought his help to notify people around on how to rescue us.

“I did not feel any heat at all. If I had been underneath till this moment I would have been okay. I summoned courage immediately the incident happened, believing that God was there for us.

“It was not by our power, but just to make us realise that God exist.”

Fatiregun further insisted the quality and quantity of materials used were sufficient enough in accordance with approved building regulations.

Another survivor, Ismaila Segun, a bricklayer, receiving treatment at the University College Hospital, UCH, Ibadan, said he was at the site of the incident to collect his days pay for work done on another site been managed by his boss.

“I have finished the work giving to me on another site at Odo-Ona Elewe, Ibadan and my boss asked me to come for the money at the other site located at Sogoye where the incident occurred.

“I was at the site, sweeping when the building suddenly collapsed. I was on my knees since that time till the excavator was brought to rescue us from the debris.

“The building suddenly came down, everywhere became dark. For four hours, my two legs were trapped in the rubble, I couldn’t move them. I was in serious pain and thought I would die. After several hours I heard sounds of people breaking concrete to rescue us.”

A senior medical officer at the Accident and Emergency department of the hospital, Dr. Ekunola Kayode, said a survivor was brought to the hospital from the collapsed building.

“The victim on arrival, complained of severe waist pain and we were able to resuscitate him.

“I can tell you that the victim is recuperating very fast and with this I am very sure the victim would be fine by the grace of God.”

But unconfirmed sources said another survivor who was also taken to the hospital discharged himself, against medical advise.

The victim was said to have complained that he was only been injections and drugs without food.

When our correspondent visited the site, officials of Standard Organization of Nigeria were seen collecting samples of the materials of the collapsed building which a source said would be used for laboratory test.

As at the time of filing this report, the state government has also concluded arrangement to visit the site and also the victims at the hospital.

The government had earlier in a statement directed that the victims be given free treatment, promising that thorough investigation would be carried out on the cause of the incident.

Meanwhile, Governor Abiola Ajimobi of Oyo State has sympathised with victims of the building collapse in Ibadan, and ordered free treatment for the injured at government hospitals.

Mr Bolaji Tunji, Special Adviser on Communication and Strategy to the Governor, said this in a statement made available to newsmen on Saturday in Ibadan.

The three-storey building, which is still under construction, had collapsed on Friday evening at the Sogoye area of the city, leaving some persons injured.

The governor directed that the victims should be moved to the state hospitals and should be given immediate and free medical attention.

Ajimobi expressed sadness over the incident, which he described as avoidable.

He expressed gratitude to God that no life was lost in the incident.

“I’m greatly saddened by the collapse of the uncompleted building in which some people were initially trapped. This is very unfortunate and disheartening.

“But, we must give glory to the Almighty that no life was lost in the incident.

“I have directed the relevant agencies to ensure that all the victims are transferred to government hospitals and given immediate medical attention at no cost to them,” he said.

The governor commended the rescue team for their prompt intervention which led to the evacuation of the victims without recording any fatality.

He said that thorough investigation would be carried out by the government to determine the immediate and remote cause of the collapse.

Ajimobi said that anybody found culpable from the investigation would be dealt with in accordance with the law.

NAN reports that a delegation of the state government led by the State Commissioner for Health, Dr Azeez Adeduntan, also visited a victim at the University College Hospital, Ibadan.

Friday’s building collapse in Ibadan came barely 72 hours after a similar incident in Lagos, in which no fewer than 20 persons, including school children, died.