Lagos market fire: More buildings to go down, says Sanwo-Olu


Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos state on Thursday said more buildings will be demolished to allow for proper cleanup of the Dosumu market.

He spoke when he visited the scene with some members of the State Executive Council.

The governor had earlier ordered a stop of commercial activities in all markets in Lagos Central.

Sanwo-Olu, who described the disaster as ‘preventable’, blamed it on carelessness.

He said: “This is very unfortunate. This fire started on Tuesday and first responders were activated. We thought it was something we could control in the first couple of hours but, unfortunately, our people have been very reckless, and they denied the first responders access. So even 48 hours after, it is still an active disaster site.

“About 14 buildings have been affected but more might still go down after the extensive fit-for-purpose test that will be conducted soon.

“What I have seen here could have been prevented. We don’t have a full report yet, so I don’t want to speculate, but the initial report said the fire resulted from gross carelessness and people not understanding what it means to keep the environment safe, but we will conduct a proper extensive audit into what led to this.

“We also notice that a lot of residential apartments have been converted into warehouses with inflammable materials kept in them. This is totally unacceptable; we will not allow a few people, who will not comply with our laws, to put the lives of others in danger. I announced yesterday that the market all around will be closed until we are able to do full assessments and proper cleanup of this area. And without any doubt, some other buildings will go down.

“So, this is a call to others outside that the government will not shy away from its responsibility, we will come really hard on structures and property that will not conform to our rules and bring them down. And I will shut this place for as long as it takes, there will be zero tolerance all around here”, he added.