HomeMETROFire Consumes Mandilas Building, Leaving 6,700 Traders Counting Losses of Goods

Fire Consumes Mandilas Building, Leaving 6,700 Traders Counting Losses of Goods

In a devastating incident the iconic Mandilas building on Broad Street, Lagos Island, became the epicentre of tragedy as a fire consumed its 14-storey structure. The aftermath reveals a grim reality, with no fewer than 6,700 traders losing their goods in the blaze. The toll is staggering, encompassing 450 shops, 30 offices, two hotels, and five restaurants within the building.

According to the Lagos State Coordinator of the National Emergency Management Agency, Ibrahim Farinloye, the fire originated from the first floor, where welding activities were allegedly taking place during the installation of a power generator. Shockingly, the blaze went unnoticed until it reached a critical point, prompting a delayed call for the fire service. The inferno rapidly spread from the first floor to the seventh, causing extensive damage not only to the main complex but also to surrounding market stalls at the Atunwase International Market.

The scale of the tragedy became apparent as Alhaja Adeniji Rashidat, the Iya Oja of the Atunwase International Market Mandilas General, briefed assessors. She estimated the affected traders to number around 6,700, with losses extending to various businesses operating within the building.

The aftermath at the scene revealed a heartbreaking sight of distraught traders lamenting their losses. Some were hesitant to speak to the media, emphasizing the profound impact the incident had on their emotional well-being. Among those who did speak, the sentiment was unanimous quantifying the losses was an impossible task, with many expressing the devastation of seeing their life savings consumed by the flames.

Sewa, a clothing trader in the building, described her despair, unable to quantify the loss she had incurred. The sentiments were echoed by others who shared stories of financial ruin and shattered dreams. The lack of access roads for firefighting trucks complicated the situation, hindering their timely response. This allowed the fire to escalate to the seventh floor, intensifying the destruction.

One trader, Agu, suffered a staggering loss of goods worth almost a billion naira. He owned an entire floor in the building, and his brother’s store was also ravaged. Another trader, Badmus, shared the extent of his devastation, revealing a loss of goods estimated at N200 million. His warehouse housing over 7,000 shoes, was engulfed in flames, along with critical business documents.

Despite the overwhelming challenges, emergency responders, including the Lagos Fire Service, Police, Lagos State Building Control Agency, and Lagos Neighbourhood Safety Corps, were on the scene promptly. Their efforts were focused on controlling the situation and ensuring the safety of individuals in the vicinity. 



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