The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) says 15 corpses, including a family of four, were recovered from the scene of Sunday’s explosion which occurred at Abule Ado in Amuwo Odofin local government area of Lagos state.
Ibrahim Farinloye, acting coordinator of NEMA in Lagos, told NAN that a couple and their two sons were among those who died in the explosion.
He said they were on their way to church when the unfortunate incident happened.
At least 60 students of Bethlehem Girls College located within the area who sustained various degrees of injuries were taken to the Nigerian Navy Hospital in Satellite town.
Farinloye said over 50 buildings, including Bethlehem Girls College and a popular hotel, were damaged in the explosion.
“The resulting fire later spread to the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) oil pipeline passing through the area even though the pipeline has been shutdown as a precautionary measure,” he said.
“The fire was eventually extinguished about 3.30p.m. through the combined efforts of officials of the Lagos State Fire Service, Federal Fire Service and Nigerian Navy Fire Tender.”
Also, Oladele Daji, staff Ooficer, Western Naval Command, told reporters that the students were stabilised at the Navy Hospital, adding that those who have fully recovered would be discharged soon.
He said the Nigerian Navy in collaboration with other security agencies had began clearing the pipeline right of way across Lagos, asking the government to revoke the certificate of occupancy of houses sited close to pipelines.
On his part, Olufemi Oke-Osayintolu, director-general, Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA), said the government would carry out a thorough investigation to unravel the cause of the explosion.
“Our advice to people is that there is no need to panic. We are on top of the situation and the fire has been put out through collaboration by the various agencies,” he said.
“We can neither smell gas nor petrol, we can’t really say this is what led to the fire. We are still waiting for the outcome of the result to know the cause of the fire outbreak.”
Abayomi Abeyi, one of the victims, said his building was severely damaged while his wife sustained injuries from the explosion.
Abeyi, who is the chairman, National Union of Road Transport Workers, Mile 2, Amuwo Odofin branch, appealed to the Lagos state Government to come to the aid of the victims of the unfortunate incident.