Ikeja - A geo-technical engineer, Mr
Joseph Folayan, on Wednesday debunked the claim that a defective foundation was
responsible for the collapse of a guest house within the Synagogue Church of
Folayan, the principal partner of Progress Engineering
Company, said this while testifying before the coroner's inquest
investigating the cause of the collapse of the six-storey building on Sept.
The reports that the inquest
was set up by the Lagos State Government to investigate the building collapse
which killed 116 people, mainly South Africans.
It would be recalled that the Lagos State Material Testing
Agency had claimed in its structural integrity test on the building that it
collapsed as a result of a defective foundation.
Also read: Joshua loses suit to stop Synagogue's collapse probe
However, Folayan who was led in evidence by SCOAN's counsel,
Mr Olalekan Ojo, faulted the report, noting that the 2.2 metres by 2.2 metres
used for the foundation base was adequate for the structure.
"As a practising geo-technical engineer with over 45
years of experience, it is my view that the soil under those foundation
did not fail.
"The pad used in the construction did not constitute a
failure," the witness said.
He said that, although he was not a structural engineer,
there was the need to investigate the failure of all the columns above the
Folayan, therefore, urged the Council for the Regulation of
Engineering in Nigeria (COREN) to carry out further investigation on the incident.
"It is a wake-up call for us in the engineering
profession. We need to know why the building collapsed," the witness said.
Earlier, the court admitted as exhibits, some documents
tendered by Mr Olutoye Ayinde, the Lagos State Commissioner for Physical Planning
and Urban Development.
The documents included the approval plan for the main
auditorium of the church as well as a general survey of the entire complex.
However, the SCOAN counsel, Ojo, who objected to the
admission of the documents, argued that they were not relevant to the inquest
because it was not the main auditorium that collapsed.
He argued that the church had never said it had a building
approval for the collapsed building.
Ojo added that it was in evidence that the approval was
being processed when the unfortunate incident occurred.
However, the coroner, Mr Oyetade Komolafe, held that the
documents should be admitted as Exhibits 035 to 040.
NAN reports that the matter was adjourned till April 8 for