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Lagos Tragedy: Mobile Policeman loses four children to mudslide
The building now marked for demolition

Lagos Tragedy: Mobile Policeman loses four children to mudslide


No fewer than four persons, including three children, were dead after another building collapsed in the early hours of yesterday in Lagos.

The building, a bungalow located at Orisha Street, Isheri, Magodo caved in while it rained heavily.

The deceased were identified as Isayo Odiah (23); DeSylva Odiah (15); Clinton Odiah (13) and eight-year-old Endurance Odiah.

The deceased were said to be siblings from the same mother, who was said to have collapsed and rushed to a nearby hospital.

Their father, Godwin Odia, who is attached to the Mobile Police Force, the combat arm of the Nigeria Police, was said to have woken up around 3am to take his bath and had stepped into the parlour when the mudslide hit the children’s room.

Fifty-year-old Odia said his children would not have died if the mudslide happened during the week when they would have gone to school.

He said, “By 3am, I wake up every day to prepare for work. That is the time I also wake them up. But since today is Saturday, I did not bother to do that. I still saw them sleeping as I prepared myself for

“I was in the parlour when I heard a loud noise. My four children just died like that. God, what is my offence? What did I do wrong?  Four children in one day?! I am supposed to die in their place. I must have sinned. I don’t even know what I am still doing alive.”

Their mother who heard the story, collapsed and we learnt that Mayflower Hospital where the mother of seven was initially taken to rejected her because “there was no card” before she was eventually rushed to Tabasco Hospital.

A resident of the collapsed building said: “Around 6am, we heard a loud sound. But we did not know that the upper part of another building beside the bungalow has fallen on it.

“Unfortunately, it fell just on the room where Mr. Godwin Odiah’s children were sleeping. The man has seven children but three of them were not around.

“He was the one who saw it and started screaming for help. He said he was in the bathroom when he heard the sound but did not know that it was in his compound.

“Another building also collapsed again but I don’t know if anyone was killed.

“Government needs to do something in this area. It is sandy and water logged. I think the incident was not unconnected with the heavy rain and the topography in the area,” said the resident.

Emergency workers comprising the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), the Lagos State Fire Service, Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA) and the police were on ground to manage the situation.

Confirming the incident, NEMA’s spokesman for the southwest, Ibrahim Farinloye, said the collapse was caused by mudslides from the cleavage of a hill beside River Ogun.

He said: “Four persons were recovered dead. The cause of the collapse was the heavy rainfall.

“Mudslides from the cleavage of a hill beside River Ogun hit the three- bedroom flat, unfortunately the room where the deceased were recovered was the one hit by the mudslides.

“Another mudslide fell on one single room building in the area but no one was trapped there.”

The four bodies were handed over to the family by LASEMA and policemen from the Isheri division.

They were later moved to a community cemetery in the area by a SEMU ambulance amid tears from residents where the burial took place.

LASEMA boss, Micheal Akindele, said the people have been advised to vacate their homes temporarily, adding that some buildings in the area have been marked.


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