A fire outbreak has killed two young men and ravaged a five-storey building on the Lagos Island, destroying property worth millions. The building, close to the popular Mandilas Building is No 10-12 Breadfruit Street, which is used mainly by traders selling shoes, bags and clothing. It also housed a small branch of UBA Bank.
Spectators converged there, who were mainly shop owners, sales girls and residents of the area, told Jungle Journalist that the cause of the fire was unknown. Although fire service personnel and the police were already converged when Jungle Journalist arrived the scene, they could do nothing as the fire burnt on the fourth floor. Evidently, they had no ladders with which to climb up to quench the fire, which was already fiercely burning. It had eaten up the whole of the fourth floor, and rendered the fifth useless. Some brave young men were seen on the second and third floors trying to salvage their goods, and despite the heat, falling debris from the house, and pleas from onlookers for them to come down, they continued.
People were seen carrying their goods to safety, and the police who stood around watched intently, ensuring that nothing was stolen. Several men and even women were seen wailing uncontrollably, weeping that their investments were completely gone. A woman, who was identified as Madam Mgbocha, whom the reporter tried to comfort, said that she lost her husband a few months ago, and have now lost everything he left for her to raise their children. She just kept wailing. Another was seen been comforted by her husband who also tried hard to fight the tears. It was clear that their shops were on the very floor where the fire burnt. Another lady, Uloma who said she did no wait to recover anything stated that the building was known to burn every year. “How can a house be burning every year? Something is suspicious about this house. Two years ago, a boy jumped down from it while the fire burnt. I don’t know whether he died. Last year again, the house burnt again.” She praised two other girls who were with her, commending them for running out with their lives, unlike those who stayed back to pack their things. “Don’t mind them. Their masters have all ran out and they are thee risking their lives. If you die, will the goods come back?” About five minutes after she spoke, the pillars holding the floor collapsed, and the two floors above crashed down, sending hot debris all around and people to their heels. People were screaming “It has killed them! It has killed them!” while some boys were able to run out, a man was seen crying, stating that his brother was probably dead, since he was up there when the house crashed. Another woman was crying too, trying to reach someone who was up there on the phone. All her efforts were in vain, as it seemed that whoever it was hit by that crash.
As at the time of filing this report, the fire was still raging, while the Union Bank Fire Service, who had a ladder were making frantic efforts to go put out the fire.