As Sanwo-Olu orders probe into inferno
Victims lament losses
By Olasunkanmi Akoni
At least one person was confirmed dead while others sustained injuries in a communal clash that broke out Sunday, in Okobaba, Ebute-Metta, Mainland Local Government Area where fire gutted last Friday.
Meanwhile, following the widespread open fire that gutted several plank buildings at the Okobaba area, Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has despatched an inter-ministerial team to investigate the immediate and remote cause of the inferno with the view to resettle and compensate victims.
According to the report, a new violent conflict broke out in the early hours of Sunday in Ebute-Metta, between a group of truck pushers who specialised within scraps business, mainly, Hausa and some Odua People’s Congress, OPC.
However, men associated with the Denton Police Station, Lagos State Command, that raced to the scene of the clash later restored peace and normalcy to the particular area.
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Commissioner for Finance, Mr Rabiu Olowo, led other government teams towards the site which included, Commissioner for Physical Planning and Urban Development, Mr Idris Salako plus Special Adviser for the Chief excutive on Civic Engagement, Mrs Adebowale-Owoeye, in addition to were accompanied by typically the Mainland County Chairman, Mrs Omolola Essien.
Narrating on the government team how this clash happened, Mr Hassan Ibrahim, Leader Hausa Youth, Okobaba, said: “We lost one of our members during a fracas with some people who claimed to be OPC. Trouble started when a few of our own men went to buy scraps from often the burnt shanties and while on their way back they were intercepted and even harassed by some miscreants and OPC demanding with regard to money before they could go with your scrap materials which the members resisted.
“In the exact process fight broke out. One was shot in the head and others who sustained injuries are currently receiving treatment at the very Ebute Metta Health Centre.
“We are just making preparation on how to bury a deceased today. We are usually not happy about this but with total submission to God, we usually are ready to maintain the serenity on the main interest regarding the general public. ”
Also speaking on behalf of fire victims, Alhaji Abdulhakeem Mohammed, appealed for government’s assistance as the people will be a really poor group.
Mohammed said: “We are happy that the Chief of the servants has sent representatives to have on finally, the spot assessment. Initially, each of our fear has been you had been going to send us packing from here but with your assurance, we are hopeful.
“All we need is the government’s compensation. The people living here regarding 500 families are masses who can barely afford three square meals. We have nowhere to go. ”
Olowo, who pleaded for calm and cooperation among the warring parties together with the fireplace victims, urged them to maintain peaceful coexistence, shun conflict and additionally violence.
While commiserating along with those who dropped their valuables, he stated the government would liaise together with stakeholders not to mention groups in order to find some sort of lasting solution to incessant fire incidence which has been an annual occurrence with the latest being the third within three months.
Olowo said: “Mr Governor offers asked us to come and have the upon the spot situation and also report back to him. We happen to be here to be able to see exactly what happened, how bad it is, in a good bid for you to understand the present situation, so that we may also learn what we could do to bring some succour to that people affected.
”It is not very good at sight, what we should will hope to do is to understudy the root cause and we really are going to help attack it from the root cause to ensure that this kind of thing will not happen once again. We are not really here towards displace you. ”
The particular Governor’s delegation into the area also visited the Ebute Metta Health Centre where those injured during the détonation were being treated.