Three dead in church collapse in Nigeria

Building collapses are commonplace in Africa’s most populous country, where millions live in derelict buildings and building standards are often flouted.

FILE: A Nigeria flag. Image: AFP

PORT HARCOURT — At least three people, including two children, were killed and another 18 people rescued when a church collapsed in southern Nigeria, police said on Wednesday.

Building collapses are commonplace in Africa’s most populous country, where millions live in derelict buildings and building standards are often flouted.

The church collapsed Tuesday night in the Okpanam suburb of Asaba, the Delta state capital, local police spokesman Bright Edafe said.

Eleven of those rescued are still being treated in hospital, he added.

Local media said the building collapsed while an evening service was being held.

Building standards have been in the spotlight since a skyscraper under construction collapsed in Lagos in November, killing at least 45 people.

Poor workmanship, substandard materials and corruption to bypass official oversight are often blamed for construction disasters in Nigeria.

At least 152 buildings have collapsed in Lagos, a city of about 20 million people, since 2005, according to a South African university researcher.

One of those incidents that sparked widespread anger was in 2014 when dozens of people died in a church collapse in Lagos.

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