Founder of the The Synagogue Church of All Nations, Prophet T.B Joshua has played down the tragedy that happened yesterday in his church where the guest-house collapsed and killed scores of people.
The statement reads: “A building, not the church auditorium as was reported. The few people that were there are being rescued. What you wish to others, God wishes to you. Nothing makes us love a person as much as praying for him. The more I love you, the more I will pray for you.”
A member of the church media team, Mr. Oladapo Bankole told newsmen that three helicopters hovered over the six-storey building about 20 minutes before the building collapsed.
Another church member said that there was no casualty. He said, “It was just a small thing. I attend this church. Nobody died. You know Ikotun has a huge population, that is why you see many people here.”
Reports have it that in a brutal attempts to hush up the sad development, members of the church, mobbed and assaulted a photojournalist working for NTA, smashing his camera. They also molested other reporters and individuals who tried to take pictures of the scene.
Government workers who were on the scene for official assignment were equally molested.
His word: ‘’The church members have been very aggressive and tried attacking emergency responders. Before emergency responders’ arrival, about 15 persons were said to have been rescued. On arrival, we rescued three persons and a child, while three dead bodies were also recovered . Many are said to still be trapped under.”
It was gathered that the building, which was under construction, was initially a two-storey building before the addition of four new floors which were under construction.
Meanwhile, the Lagos State Building and Control Agency (LASBCA) has faulted the construction of the collapsed building, saying it was an illegal structure after the church could not produce its approval letter on request.
The GM, Mrs. Abimbola Animashaun said the government could not confirm or trace any document stating approval to commence construction work in the premises.
Animashaun, who led her team to the scene of the incident, said none of the church members could provide evidence of approval for the collapsed building.
She said, “We have been here challenging them on the building approval but they haven’t said anything convincing. They claimed to have approval but we could not confirm it. They were told to bring the building approval authorised by the government; none of them could do that.”