Less than four months after the multi-million naira Princess Hotel, Okigwe, being constructed by the State Government, collapsed, Dozens of students of the Imo State University (IMSU), Owerri escaped death by whiskers when a storey building lecture hall and office complex being constructed in the university campus collapsed.
According to findings, the twin lecture hall, located opposite St. Joseph’s Catholic Chaplaincy, IMSU, is being constructed by the state government.
According to eye-witness account, the building collapsed in the afternoon of penultimate weekend.
247ureports.com investigation revealed that the structure, which had been completed and roofed, caved out from its base after the POP ceilings were put in place by the contracting firm.
It was gathered that crack sign and sound awoke the sense of the students, who were taking shelter by the building. They were said to have hurriedly run out of the vicinity; and just in a jiffy, the building caved out.
The building however did not totally fall, but remained bended with only the ceilings and the roofs falling.
247ureports.com visited the site and noticed that a red tape was tied round the building as a caution to unsuspecting students.
It was also gathered that no life was lost in the incident but a civil engineer, who spoke on strict grounds of anonymity, blamed the crash on substandard materials or a possible plan by the contractor to cut corners.Also speaking, one of the people who operate shops near the collapsed building confirmed a crack signal before the gradual collapse of the building. She equally explained that, the crack signal was a saving grace for all the students who escaped unhurt.
When contacted for comment, the Vice Chancellor of the university, Prof. Ukachukwu Awuzie, confirmed the incident but said he was not in a better position to say anything about the contractor or the building.Also, the institution’s Public Relations Officer, Nze Njoku Obi told our reporter to go to the principal secretary to the governor to find out who the contractor of the building is. The PRO declined further comments on why the government should be bypassing the university management when building infrastructures in the institution.
An attempt by the our correspondent to see Dr. Pascal Obi, Principal Secretary to the governor proved abortive as the security men refused to allow him access.