Twelve days after the collapse of a seven-storey building under construction at Woji Road, GRA, Phase 11, Port Harcourt, anxious relatives of some construction workers trapped in the rubble are still hopeful that rescue operators would pull out their loved ones alive.
Some of the relatives who trooped to the collapsed building site on a daily basis keeping watch told journalists that they were still waiting patiently for the time when their relatives would be pulled out alive from the rubble.
One of them tearfully said: “My immediate younger brother named Alalibo who normally worked in this building was in there when it collapsed.
I am devastated, but every day I come here hoping to see him come out alive. Although the rescue workers are trying, it is not enough. We want them to intensify the rescue operation and let us know whether they are alive or not.”
Another relative stated: “I am a Christian. I still have hope because with God all things are possible. We expected government to bring in more and better equipment for the rescue operation. Government should please do more.”
One of the female relatives was very optimistic. She said: “I know my brother is still alive. But the rescue activities are not showing any encouragement. This is eleven days after, since Friday November 23.”
Meanwhile the Judicial Commission of Inquiry set up by the state government to investigate the cause of collapse of the 7-storey building would be inaugurated today (Tuesday) by the governor of the state, Barrister Nyesom Ezebunwo Wike.
In a statement issued in Port Harcourt, Monday, the Rivers State Commissioner for Information, Barrister Emma Okah, listed the 7-member commission to include Justice Adolphus Enebeli as Chairman, Madume Egerton as Secretary, and Wofu Charles as the legal counsel. Other members include Ibirema Akubor, Emmanuel Asawo, Ngozi Oliver Wogu, and Tim Otuke Oji.
As at Friday last week 8 people have been confirmed dead while reports put the number of persons pulled out from the rubble alive at 33. The number of persons in the building when it collapsed is yet to be ascertained.