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The NEWS/PMNEWS Office Fire: How It Happened

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PM News Office after the fire

It all began like a joke. A reporter came into the newsroom around 7 p.m saying he could smell a cable burning inside the building. The security guards ran inside and tried to locate where the smell was coming from. They scoured the two upper floors and found nothing.

Electricity supply to the two floors was cut off. But the burning smell continued.

Thirty minutes after, a glow was sighted by the window of the third floor from the outside.

It was then it became clear what was happening. It was fire ravaging the floor.

There was stampede as shards of glass started flying out of the windows and frantic steps marched upstairs, to deal with the fire.

It was an impossible mission. The office door was locked. But the staff were undeterred as the door, after much effort was smashed open.

But what greeted the staff was not what they bargained for. It was not a small fire, it was a smoldering one with great intensity and its surging force pushed the small party back on a hasty retreat.

This was not a fire that could be put off by pails of water. As it ravaged the floor, it needed the attention of the professionals.

There was stampede all over the premises as staff picked one item or the other and made for the ground floor, awaiting the firemen.

Management, editors and staff of TheNEWS, and its sister publication, P.M. NEWS will never forget Wednesday, 21 November, 2012. Infact, majority of them are yet to recover from the shock which resulted from the fire which razed the third floor of its corporate headquarters on 27 Acme Road, Agidingbi, Lagos State.

The Group Senior Editor, Babajide Kolade-Otitoju, Production Editor, Mr. Akin Obasa, Deputy Editor, Lanre Babalola and others were trapped at the back of the building and had to scale the fence to escape to the nearby building.

“When we could not escape through the front of the building because of flying glass, we had to scale the fence and jump into the next building beside us,” recalled Tunde Adekeye, Assistant Production Editor.

Everyone in the building finally got evacuated at exactly 8.10p.m.

Also giving an account of the incident, Kolade-Otitoju, speculated that the fire could have resulted from power surge from one of the offices on the third floor.

“One of the cables started burning as a result of power surge and at that time, it was very minimal,” he said. According to him, the staff continued to work oblivious of the fact that the building was on fire.

“It was when I came out and saw that the fire was serious that we ran back into the newsroom and asked the people to leave and within minutes, the fire had spread and had become fierce.

“The floor is like one big hall partitioned into small offices and the stuff used to partition the offices were combustible. This aided the spread of the fire.

“Within 30 minutes, half of that third floor had been razed,” he noted, adding that they all started calling the office of the fire service, friends and concerned Nigerians to come to their aid.

”We put pressure on the fire fighters because we have seen entire buildings razed completely as a result of poor response from the fire service. We didn’t want our case to be like that.”

He commended the fire fighters saying they came with three vehicles in quick succession and this gave the staff assurance that the fire would be defeated.

Deputy Editor, Mr. Lanre Babalola, however described the response of the fire fighters as disappointing, saying “if they had arrived early, the fire would not have spread beyond just one office on the third floor. But I commend them for their fighting spirit because when they finally came, they put in their best and succeeded in preventing the fire from spreading to other floors. They displayed professionalism, but they need to improve on their response time to fire incidents,” he said.

The Administration Manager, Mr. Rafiu Salau, said the loss cannot be quantified now, but noted that the third floor would have to be rebuilt.

He said as at the time he was called, the damage had been done. “At the time I came, it was beyond anybody, but the firemen really did a good job, even though they did not get to this place early enough,” he said.

By the time the fire was put off, everything on the floor, books, documents, office equipment, the ceiling, the roof were all gone, eaten up by the remorseless fire. [PM NEWS]

Lifestyle

Actress Osas Ighodaro Celebrates Her 30th Birthday With Emotional Post

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Actress Osas Ighodaro Celebrates Her 30th Birthday With Emotional Post
Osas Ighodaro

Osas Ighodaro

Nigerian actress, Osas Ighodaro penned an emotional note via Instagram as she clocked 30-years-old on Monday.

To mark her birthday, the single mother of one posted a monochrome photo of herself as she wished for people to continue praying for those who lost their lives during these turbulent period.

Ighodaro wrote;

“Thank God for another year. Happy Birthday to me. If you know me, you know I absolutely love birthdays but this year it certainly hits different. I’m overwhelming grateful for life and thankful to God to be able to see another birthday bc unfortunately many haven’t and won’t have that opportunity.

I am hopeful for better days for myself, those that I love and hold dear and most certainly for my country Nigeria. I pray for unity, peace, harmony and togetherness. We all deserve it.

My birthday wish is to please continue to pray for those innocent lives lost. Please remain hopeful and focused because I truly believe better days are soon ahead by God’s grace.

Peace, Love and Blessings.”

See her post below:

The actress’ post

The actress’ post

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Travel

Exotic Resorts May Be the Best Bet for a Holiday

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An exotic vacation usually means exploring a distant foreign country, whilst resorts are places
to go for rest, sport, or which offers a particular speciality, with many resorts being part of a
popular tourist destination or on or near a beach. If you are planning a vacation to an exotic
resort it can be a once-in-a-lifetime vacation to a far-flung destination or a luxurious place to
stay closer to home where you can enjoy some pampering.

Why stay at an exotic resort

Exotic resorts often offer all-inclusive vacation deals, along with other options that leave you
to plan your stay more precisely to your own wishes. These resorts offer excellent customer
service, superb accommodation and facilities and are usually to be found in beautiful settings.
Here are some of the best resorts from around the world for you to consider:

Four Seasons Resort, Seychelles
This famous resort has made many feel they have entered Paradise. The gentle ocean breeze
floats up the granite hillside and into your tree-house villa tucked away from the other guests
staying at the resort. This is perfect for encouraging you to relax, either by your private pool
or in the clear blue waters of Petite Anse Bay. Perfect for a romantic stay, there is a Spa for
pampering and the chance for a sunset meal on a deserted beach.

Some enjoy simply sitting on their balcony, gazing at the ocean between reading their book,
sketching or checking out international bookmakers and betting sites for the chance of a
flutter. If you want another type of adrenaline kick, check out the resorts excellent kayaking
and snorkelling facilities, which are recommended by nearly all who try it.

Anantara Resort, Hua Hin, Thailand

The ultimate tropical getaway, the Anantara Resort is an award-winning site modelled on a
traditional Thai village and is just three hours drive south of Bangkok. The location is where
Thai royalty and aristocrats have been holidaying for almost one-hundred years. Today, you
can visit historical attractions alongside theme parks and shops as well as vineyards and golf
courses.

The resort is set among 14 acres of lush tropical grounds with lotus-filled lagoons and
meandering pathways through exotic foliage, with many rooms overlooking the shoreline.
Each day, chefs prepare freshly caught local seafood alongside Thai specialities. The resort
also has an award-winning spa located within a lagoon-inspired oasis offering you the perfect
opportunity to relax.

Kurumba, Maldives

Kurumba is a well-established resort that opened almost 50 years ago and continues to offer
superb hospitality and contemporary facilities. There are seven speciality restaurants offering
cuisine from Italy to the Middle East as well as Thila, a restaurant which extends out over the
water which offers gourmet breakfasts and seafood dinners.

You can go snorkelling over the nearby reef full of colourful marine life or sign up to a dive
package as part of your stay, or just enjoy a private pool when staying at one of the spacious
villages. There are also deluxe beachfront bungalows offering direct beach access and views
of the crystal-clear waters.

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Coronavirus

Healthcare Workers To Receive Coca-Cola-Funded PPEs From Nigerian Red Cross

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Since the outbreak of the Coronavirus disease in Nigeria, our healthcare workers have continued to lead the charge against the disease. As the number of recorded COVID-19 cases in Nigeria began to increase, these healthcare workers rose to the challenge and fought tirelessly to protect the lives of Nigerians impacted by the disease.

Considering the risks these healthcare workers face, there is a crucial need for adequate protective equipment for these brave frontline workers.

Coca-Cola is excited that over 400,000 Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs) procured to support the intervention efforts of the Nigerian Government and other key stakeholders to fight the COVID 19 pandemic have arrived. We do believe that this will to provide succor to our healthcare workers on the frontlines

These PPEs comprise N95 respirators, surgical masks, examination gloves, face shields, medical gowns, no-touch thermometers, disposable aprons, heavy-duty rubber gloves, rubber boots, basic masks, disposable gloves, and hand sanitizers.

Since the first confirmed case of the disease in Nigeria reported in February, over 800 healthcare workers have contracted the disease. While Nigerians are encouraged to stay home where possible and practice social distancing, these healthcare workers are needed across the country in the continued fight against the disease.

This donation forms part of The Coca-Cola Foundation’s COVID-19 relief interventions in Nigeria. The Coca-Cola Foundation has provided $2.5m in grant to IFRC who seeks to directly impact the lives of 1.4 million people in Nigeria and across other countries in West and Central Africa under this partnership.

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