Writer: Ayomide Owonibi Odekanyin, Lagos
A witness from the Building Collapse Prevention Guild (BCPG) and Deputy President of the Nigerian Institute of Engineers, Oreoluwa Fadayomi, on Friday informed a Lagos State Coroners Court sitting in Ikeja, presided over by Chief Magistrate Oyetade Komolafe, that he had no evidence that the Synagogue Church of All Nations (SCOAN) tampered with the beams of the collapsed guest house belonging to the church.
It would be recalled that the guest house collapsed on September 12, 2014 killing 166 people.
Answering questions while being cross-examined by lawyer to SCOAN, the witness said that due to the heavy security presence at the scene of the collapsed guest house, he felt there was no need to give further instruction to the church as to ensuring that other parts of the collapsed guest house was not tampered with.
While insisting that remains of the collapsed building had been tampered with to arrive at a more credible report, Fadayomi said, “I did not say it was the church that tampered with the beams and any other part of the collapsed guest house.”
When asked if he used a digital camera to take the shot of the collapsed building, the witness said, “I used my IPad to take photos when I arrived the scene of the incident.”
Meanwhile, an explosives expert and researcher, Mr. Biedomo Paul Iguniwei, in compliance with the directive of Chief Magistrate Komolafe, tendered a research paper as an addendum to his earlier deposition before the court.
According to the research paper, Iguniwei maintained that the collapsed guest house was caused by an infrasonic weapon fired at the church by the aircraft that hovered over the building.
The researcher, who described as baseless, the position of the Lagos State government which tends to support structural defect as cause of the collapse building, maintained that scientific evidence, coupled with the CCTV footage of the collapse building, suggested that the building collapsed due to high energy infrasound absorption.
According to him, “The Lagos State government has been pushing the reason for the collapse to be due to foundational/structural defects to poor construction standards used by the church engineers to construct the building while the church has alluded the collapse to a terror attack/sabotage by explosives and controlled demolition.
“Having looked at all the reasons adduced and personally visited the scene of the collapse and analysed the video footage of the preceding moments before the collapse of the structure, it was deduced that the collapse resulted from high energy infrasound absorption by the building leading to a high energy resonance of the constituent atoms of the building.
Iguniwei supported the infrasonic weapon theory thus: “This is even more accurate based on the fact that all other options being put forward were eliminated scientifically, creating what appears to be a mystery (due to limited knowledge) surrounding the collapse of the building.
“The foundation failure option cannot hold scientifically because upon inspection of the foundation pads of the building, it was observed that the foundation pads are still intact with no stress or cracks on the steel and concrete pillars protruding from the earth.
“And the CCTV footage showed a collapse that is not consistent with other known buildings that have collapsed as a result of structural failure. As it is, it can be concluded scientifically that there were no explosives in the building when it collapsed upon the post-blast analysis done. It can also be true to safely say the building didn’t come down as a result of foundational/structural failure.
“Because its collapse was not consistent with known cases of building collapsing structurally and coupled with the fact that the foundational pillars showed no sign of stress so far, the only reasonable explanation of the cause of collapse is the use of infrasonic weapon on the building.”
Further hearing has been adjourned till Wednesday April 29.
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