Fidelity bank card banner Camano banner
School boy pulled from rubble of collapsed Lagos building remains calm amid chaos

By Alexis Akwagyiram on 15/03/2019

Views: 465


The boy lay wide-eyed on a bed of outstretched arms. The men who carried him, and others looking on, cheered at the sight of the youngster who seconds earlier had been pulled from the rubble of a four-story building that collapsed in Lagos, Nigeria.

Nine-year-old Ademola Ayanbola had been in a classroom on the top floor of the building when it collapsed on Wednesday.

One of around 100 pupils who attended the primary school in the Lagos Island district of Nigeria's commercial capital, he emerged with his face caked in white dust from the rubble and a bloody graze on the side of his head.

"His eyes were open, so we knew he was alive. He wasn't shouting or crying. He was so calm," said Temilade Adelaja, the Reuters photographer who captured the moment.

"People were shouting 'there's a child'. There were people everywhere, and lots of shouting. Then they brought him out," she said, describing the moments before his rescue.

The men who surrounded him were a mix of rescue workers, residents and what locals refer to as "area boys" - youths who roam parts of Lagos in gangs. They were outside the collapsed building for hours under the tropical sun: searching, talking and sometimes arguing.

The boy's father, Francis Ayanbola, had feared he would never see his son alive again when he heard the building had collapsed. First, he went to the site, he said.

"When I got there everything was flat. I was just crying. I was expecting the death of my son," he said.

Next, he said he visited two hospitals and saw six dead children.

"I couldn't even look at their faces because I was feeling so bad," he said of the four boys and two girls he saw, none of whom he recognized.

A friend eventually called Ayanbola to tell him his child was being treated at a hospital.

"When I finally held my son I was so excited, I was so happy. It wasn't my son's dead body that I would have to carry," said Ayanbola, 32, who has two children and sells hair products for a living.

Ayanbola said his son had swelling on different parts of his head and around his eyes, but he had been able to talk.

"He told me that inside their class stones started falling down (from the ceiling). People were saying 'God, what is happening?'," he said, recounting his son's description of the moments before the building collapsed.

Ayanbola said his son, who wants to be a doctor when he grows up, was already able to talk from his hospital bed about his beloved Barcelona soccer club and star player Lionel Messi. He said results of a head scan showed the child did not suffer internal bleeding. Nigerian hospitals do not divulge patient information so this could not be confirmed.

Ayanbola said he was grateful that his son was alive, but angry that others had lost their children.

Building collapses are frequent in Nigeria, where regulations are poorly enforced and construction materials are often substandard.

Authorities have not yet been able to give a final death toll from the disaster. Numbers given on Wednesday ranged from one to eight dead and between 37 and around 50 recovered alive. But on Thursday a spokesman for the national emergency agency said some of those presumed dead had been revived and the figures were in flux. (Reuters)

Men carry nine-year-old Ademola Ayanbola, who was rescued at the site of a collapsed building containing a school in Nigeria's commercial capital of Lagos, Nigeria, March 13, 2019. REUTERS/Temilade Adelaja

Source News Express

Posted 15/03/2019 11:53:20 AM

 

 

CLASSIFIED ADS

 

You may also like...
Making haste slowly

Death toll in Kaduna attack hits 40

Boko Haram kills 19 students and staff at...

140 cases of measles reported in Taraba

Presidency disowns report on Service Chiefs

Nnamdi Kanu: Presidency under fire over ‘brazen falsehood’...

Arrest of judges: Attorney General says judges are...

Nigerian doctor discovers possible cure for malaria

Kidnappers release four NEMA staff

Nigeria: our own dear fatherland, By Rauf Aregbesola...

Haba! Even Uche Nwosu, Okorocha’s son-in-law, for Governor?...

Akpabio hails marketing whizkid Uyime Idem as firm...

 

Latest News Atiku demands Lai Muhammed’s arrest Certificate of Return: Court halts proceedings on Okorocha’s suit Fayemi unfolds agenda as Nigeria Governors’ Forum Chairman Presidential Election: Tribunal dismisses suit seeking to stop Buhari’s inauguration Police arrest 5 soldiers over alleged robbery Theresa May prepares her resignation “I saw the 17-year-old student in a pool of blood in bed” — Policeman tells court NDA screening test holds June 8 — Authority Ex-NIMASA Acting DG convicted for fraud, awaits jail Amazing developmental strides in Boko Haram’s Bornu birthplace Justice Bulkachuwa’s resignation from Presidential Poll Tribunal incomplete —Intersociety 2019 Hajj: Niger to pay for pilgrims’ uniforms, suitcases

 

Most Read NUDE PHOTO OF OMOTOLA JALADE-EKEINDE surfaces online (481,709 views) Nigerian female sex addict opens up, says ‘I like it with both men and women’ (420,040 views) Shameless Genevieve Nnaji exposes breasts in public (358,606 views) Finally named: The full list of friends of Nigerian female sex addict who prowled Facebook (306,943 views) OLUMBA OLUMBA OBU (the one who called himself God) IS DEAD (270,865 views) Igbo scholar disgraces Femi Fani-Kayode •Demolishes claims on Igbo/Yoruba history with facts and figures (241,585 views) Breaking News: POPULAR REVEREND CONVERTS TO ISLAM in Kaduna (Nigeria) (229,603 views) OBJ’s son reported dead in Lagos plane crash •Names of more victims emerge (211,351 views) 10 cars more expensive than Jets (203,496 views) My wasted years in Olumba Olumba Obu’s Evil Brotherhood (200,726 views) Lagos plane crash: Journalist releases victims’ names (181,544 views) THE FINAL DISGRACE: Igbo scholar unleashes more facts about Igbo/Yoruba history, finishes off Femi Fani-Kayode with second article (181,535 views)

 

UBA Wise Savers Promo

 

Categories Advertorials (3) African Press Organisation (81) Art & Literature (91) Business & Economy (4,277) Business Verdict (71) Columnists (1,034) Complaints & Requests (95) Enterprise & Opportunities (208) Entertainment (615) Features (754) Global Business Monitor (365) ICT Monitor (44) International (3,475) Interview (179) Live Commentary (29) Love Matters (161) Maggie's Blog (272) News (46,473) Opinion (1,243) Pidgin (17) Politics (10,817) Religion (1,007) Sports (2,012) Stock Watch (39) AMA & Al Jazeera Global Update

 

 

 

 

 

APO Group Partner

 

 

CLASSIFIED ADS

GOCOP Accredited Member

GOCOP Accredited member

 

 

Africa Media Agency and Al Jazeera