By Robert Egbe
The collapsed Synagogue Church of All Nations (SCOAN) building was in “perfect condition” before it came down on September 12, 2014, a Lagos High Court heard on Thursday.
An architect, Dayo Fabiyi, told Justice Justice Lateef Lawal-Akapo that the building had no crack nor any defection on its beams before the incident.
Fabiyi, who described himself as a volunteer in the church’s maintenance department, said he was part of the team that investigated the beams after the crash.
He testified as the seventh defence witness in the ongoing trial of two engineers and their firms for the incident in which 116 persons died.
The defendants are Oladele Ogundeji, Akinbela Fatiregun, Hardrock Construction and Engineering Company and Jandy Trust Ltd.
They are facing a 110-count charge of involuntary manslaughter said to contravene Section 222 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2011.
The fifth defendant, the Registered Trustees of SCOAN is facing a count of building without approval.
The Lagos State Government said the trustees violated Section 75 of the Urban and Regional Planning Law of Lagos State, 2010.
Led in evidence by a defence counsel, Mr Olalekan Ojo (SAN), Fabiyi explained that he worked as a volunteer in SCOAN’s maintenance department, “I go round the facilities to check if there are any sort of cracks or deflections on the beams and I did such routine inspection on the collapsed building last on September 14, 2014.
“There was no sign of deflections or any stress on the collapsed building before it collapsed,” Fabiyi said.
Under cross-examination by the prosecutor, Dr. Jide Martins, the witness said he was not involved in the investigation of the beams of the collapsed building.
He, however, added that cracks and deflections were “always visible to the eyes.”