From Laide Raheem, Abeokuta
The Ogun State governor, Dapo Abiodun, has said the gas explosion at the OPIC Plaza, Ikeja, Lagos, was avoidable if necessary checks had been made.
He called for extra safety measures to be put in place for the transport of liquefied petroleum gas across the country, in order to check incessant explosions leading to loss of lives and wanton destruction of property.
Abiodun equally urged regulators in the gas and petroleum downstream sector to ensure trucks conveying petroleum products and gas are in perfect working condition.
The governor made the call while speaking with newsmen shortly after the on-the-spot assessment of the premises of the Ogun State-owned OPIC Plaza in Ikeja, Lagos, on Friday evening.
Some parts of the building were engulfed by fire on Thursday night as a result of LPG truck explosion, which occurred in front of the plaza.
Abiodun, who expressed sadness over the loss of lives and destruction of property caused by the inferno, said that promotion of liquefied petroleum gas for domestic use in the country shouldn’t be at the expense of the people’s lives.
His words: “We must learn something from this incident, and the first thing is to begin to look at all these trucks carrying petroleum products. How can we ensure that they are safe for our roads? Can you imagine if this incident had happened while this truck was in the traffic during the rushing hour for that matter? Can you imagine the level of damage and casualty?
“We must sit down with the management of the Department of Petroleum Resources to determine how we can introduce extra safety measures. Yes, we want to promote the penetration of LPG as against the use of kerosene, but we cannot afford to do that at the expense of the safety of human lives. So, my counterpart, Governor Jide Sanwoolu (of Lagos State) and I will be having this discussion very soon,” he said.