NUJ reacts to building collapse in Delta 

By Gabriel Elozino, Asaba
The Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Delta State Council, has condole with the families of the affected victims of the Tuesday building collapse at Okpanam, Oshimili North Local Government area of Delta state, in which four persons were already confirmed dead.
NUJ in a statement by the state Chairman, Comrade Michael Ikeogwu and Secretary, Comrade Patrick Ochie also commended the Delta State Government for the prompt action by constituting the panel of inquiry  to unravel the remote causes of the collapse of the building housing the Salvation Gospel Ministry Church.
The statement reads, “We sincerely send our heartfelt condolences to families of the deceased victims and, most especially, commiserate with the church.
“Let it be emphasised that there is no fire without smoke. On this note, the Government should reconfirm to Deltans if there was any approval for the building in the first instance, and also, if the reconstruction work was approved.
While we don’t want to predict the outcome of Police investigations and the panel of inquiry, we wish to state that it is most unfortunate for any business man or professional engineer to embark on reconstruction of a building still housing human beings.
Once again,  we are saddened by the unfortunate and collateral death of some church members, especially children who were waiting on God for a fruitful year.
We are by this statement however, admonishing our colleagues, to endeavour to report the stories as they develop in a more professional and ethical manner.
We will not condone our member or members who for urgency of filing their reports, will concoct and manufacture figures of casualties not based on authority verifications.
“Nevertheless,  we urge the government to carry out a thorough investigation and make the outcome of their report public and deal decisively with anyone,  be it the landlord, the engineer or even the tenants found culpable of not conforming to ethical standards and safety measures in this circumstance.”
Recalled that the building reportedly collapsed during the a Tuesday night service of the Salvation Ministry.
So far, four deaths have been reported, including the child of the assistant pastor of the church out of a total of 24 person rescued.
The state government in a swift response has set up a 7 man panel of inquiry to investigate the immediate cause of the building collapse vowing to prosecute anyone culpable.

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