LAGOS, NOVEMBER 30, 2016 – The High Court of Lagos state, Igbosere was thrown into pandemonium on Wednesday as fire ravaged the chambers of the Chief Judge, Justice Funmilayo Atilade.
Witnesses said that the fire started few minutes after workers resumed for duties at 8.00 a.m.
The fire was said to have been caused by a spark from one of the air-conditioning unit in the Chief judge’s chamber.
The chamber of the Chief Judge is on the top floor of the old building facing Catholic Mission Street, Lagos.
The courtroom is reserved for use of the Chief Judge whenever she is in the Lagos division of the court.
It was gathered that the fire started when one of the cleaners switched on the faulty air-conditioner and left the courtroom.
Another account has it that the fire was noticed by a security woman popularly called Alhaja who raised alarm.
The security woman was said to have been hurriedly taken to the hospital as a result of the smoke she allegedly inhaled before the arrival of the firefighters.
The building was saved from being razed down following the quick intervention of Lagos State Fire Service that prevented the fire from spreading to other courtrooms.
However, it took the firefighter about one hour to put out the fire which was emitting heavy smoke from the court room.
It was observed that the fire incidence disrupted judiciary activities as litigants were evacuated from the premises and the gates locked.
But, some of the furniture and bookshelves in the CJ’s chamber were partly destroyed in the incident .
An eyewitness, who spoke to our correspondent on condition of anonymity, said he was in the office when he was informed that there was a fire outbreak.
According to the witness who is a court registrar, “the fire started from one of the air-conditioning unit in the CJ’s chamber. But, before anyone could get to know about it, it has gone out of control”.