No fewer than seven persons were feared dead as a three storey building collapsed at Federal Polytechnic, Oko Anambra state Sunday night.
Our correspondent learnt that the victims were mostly masons who used the down floor of the building as temporary abode.
The Polytechnic in a reaction
could not confirm the number of casualties .
The Public Relations Officer of the Polytechnic Mr. Obini Onuchukwu while reacting to the speculations that the building belonged to the federal Polytechnic Oko and killed about seven people upon collapse explained that the building was owned by a private estate developer.
Onuchukwu said the collapsed structure was located in a boundary village, Nwagu, at the extension site of the institution .
He said “though the building was meant to be rented to our students when completed, we thank God for His intervention at this stage” .
Onuchukwu said over 22 structures completed and ongoing in the Institution were in good condition as they were designed and handled by professionals.
He said “there’s no record of collapsed structure in the polytechnic, that will show that this one isn’t ours”.
Rescue operations were still on at the site of the incident at the time of filing this report at about 5.30pm.
Onuchukwu said buildings adjacent to the collapsed building may have been affected by the impact of the collapsed one due to proximity.
He said students in such building had since been evacuated.
He said “Our rector, Prof. Godwin Onu,in less than one hour of the incident visited the sceneand immediately gave directives for the evacuation of students residing within the axis of the collapsed building for fear of the unknown.
The State Governor, Chief Willie Obiano had said the contractor and owner of the collapsed building would be prosecuted if found to have cut corners.
Obiano who was at the polytechnic on a spot assessment of the situation described the incident as a sad event.
He said he would institute a panel to look into the incident, noting that the State government had established an agency that test the materials used in the building.
He sympathized with the students whose hostels had been shut because of the incident.
The governor assured them that their safety was very important to the State government.
The Rector thanked the governor for making out time to come and see things for himself, while also commending him for some of the safety measures he put in place in the State.