Embarks on audit of illegal installation, structural integrity of masts base, towers
By Olassunkanmi Akoni
Lagos State Government, through State Infrastructure Maintenance and Regulatory Agency, LASIMIRA, has decommissioned over 95 telecommunication masts, towers even as it identified 20 more for decommissioning over illegal installation and non compliant to regulatory standards.
Meantime, inorder to nip in the bud incessant building collapse and other structures, LASIMIRA has concluded arrangement to carryout comprehensive regulatory inspection and standards compliance audit of all telecommunication masts base stations, towers, and other appurtenances of telecommunications in the state.
The move which will commence any moment, it was gathered, aimed to prevent any possible loss of further life that could arise as a result of damage to structural integrity of such building(s), and eventual collapse.
General Manager of LASMIRA, Mr. Babajide Odekunle who stated this at a media briefing, weekend, said the agency had declared zero tolerance for such acts, saying any institution or individual caught would henceforth, be prosecuted.
Odekunle explained that the exercise is geared towards ensuring orderly development of urban infrastructure in the construction and operation of telecommunications infrastructure deployed by telecommunications, tower operators and mobile network operators in the state.
He stressed that the move was a fall out from the collapsed building with an illegal and unapproved roof-top Mast on Massey Street, Lagos Island about two weeks ago killing several people, saying the exercise became highly necessary to protect lives and property of residents.
Odekunle who reiterated the commitment of present administration of Governor Akinwunmi Ambode to protection of lives and properties of residents, affirmed that any non-compliant installed rooftop mast and those erected on perceived defective buildings with suspicious structural integrity would be de-rigged.
According to Odekunle, “Removal of abandoned and non-compliant masts and towers, so far, we have started the activity around Ikeja and its environs and about 95 masts, towers have been decommissioned. The agency has also set up a task force named; Zero Tolerance on Non-Compliant Mast and Towers in Lagos Island, saddled with the responsibility of combing the entire length and breadth of Lagos Island to discover substandard, as well as illegal or unpermitted masts, towers.”
He explained that the task force constituted two weeks ago, had been able to identify for decommissioning, over 20 masts and towers that either do not meet acceptable standards or were erected illegally without approval, adding that about eight has been decommissioned already with the operation still on-going.
To strengthen its monitoring and compliance activities, Odekunle added that the agency is set to establish zonal offices in Badagry, Epe and Ikorodu.
“Inter-agency cooperation with Lagos State Emergency Management Agency, LASEMA, Lagos State Building Control Agency, LASBCA, Lagos State Safety Commission, LSSC, and Lagos State Parks and Gardens Agency, LASPARK, is already established in order to serve the citizens of the state better.
He therefore, urged members of the public to come up with useful and adequate information on any suspicious activities around their neighborhood that relates to digging of roads/pathways, erection of mast, towers either on the ground or on the rooftop, laying of cables, pipes, among others. “Be that whistleblower by contacting us,” he said.
“Therefore, any institution, individual found to be perpetrating acts that is against the tenets of acceptable guidelines of government agencies, would be prosecuted accordingly,” he vowed.