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Anambra govt warns developers against breach of building laws

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The chairman, Anambra Physical Planning Board, Mr Chike Maduekwe, has warned that, henceforth, any building erected in any part of the state without due permit would be pulled down by the government.
Maduekwe issued the warning in Awka on Tuesday, pointing out that the incessant cases of building collapse in different parts of the country could largely be attributed to non-adherence to approved building plans. He, therefore, urged developers in the state to get building permits before commencing construction to avoid government pulling down such structures.
He said that the board had set up building committees, which were expected to move round the state to ensure that every structure being constructed conformed to approved plan.
He said that, at the end of the committee’s assignment, buildings without approval might be pulled down, in line with the stipulations of the extant law.
Maduekwe regretted that the state had recorded at least five cases of building collapse between May and June, describing the number as high and unacceptable.
He said: “Some developers refuse to get approval from the board before building because they prefer to engage quacks and this usually results in building collapse in the end.”
He said that when a building collapsed, both the developer and owner of the building always suffered colossal losses.
He said that aside from the builder facing possible professional sanctions, the owner of the building also loses his time, money and materials.
He further said that in extreme cases, people, especially construction workers, often lose their lives or suffer severe injuries.
Maduekwe said that government was not happy with the spate of unapproved buildings springing up in different parts of the state, hence its renewed efforts in order to check the menace of building collapse.
He said the board had done enough sensitisation and that defaulters would henceforth be made to face the law. “There are laid down rules in doing things in this field but out of disrespect to the right norms, builders fail to do the right things. Enough of the killings,” Maduekwe said.
He said that the board recently sealed the site of a collapsed two-storey building under construction at Nsogwu, Umunze in Orumba South local government area of the state. “This is a mark of warning that the government was taking seriously the prosecution of any developer who builds without permit either in the hinterland or urban areas,” Maduekwe said.
He said that the problem of building without approval was more prevalent in the hinterland and advised developers to always apply to the board for permit, no matter the specification. “There is no point saying this is your ancestral land, so you will build without permit. What we are talking about is the issue of life and death. Once it happens, nobody talks of land ownership again,” the board chairman said. (NAN)

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