Over three buildings in Lae were demolished last week upon the approval of the Morobe Provincial Building Board. for having illegal structures.
The demolition exercise was funded by the Lae City Authority, who are working closely with statutory bodies in Morobe.
This warehouse built in a residential area in Lae’s Salamanda area is one of the buildings that was demolished by the Provincial Building Board.
According to a building board representative, the building was approved by the board in 2015 as a residential property.
When it was built, it was constructed as a warehouse.
The owners were given 14 days to vacate the premises following a demolition notice which expired on Friday.
Machines were brought in, and the building was demolished.
Another of these structures that were knocked down include the incomplete building opposite the court house in Top Town as well as the structures and buildings within the Eriku Public Toilet premises.
The demolition to these structures were upon the approval of the provincial building board for having illegal structures.
“Lae City Authority has been happy to work in collaboration with the building board to ensure that they are able to fulfil their roles as a statutory body in Lae and Morobe as a whole. We will support any statutory body that has the obligation under their laws that govern our city and country. It’s a big credit to the building board for taking such a strong stance on the illegal structures, it really sends a clear message to the people of Lae, residents and business houses,” said the Lae City Authority CEO, Neil Ellery.
The demolition exercise is in accordance with part five, section 18 of the Building Act 1971, which indicates that if within 14 days or such further period as the Board specifies, after service of a requirement under Section 15, 16 or 17, the building or the subject of the requirement is not demolished, altered or repaired, or facilities are not provided, in accordance with the requirement, the Board may–
(a) demolish, alter or repair the building or provide the facilities in accordance with the requirement; and
(b) recover the cost of the demolition, alteration or repair or of the provision of the facilities, as the case may be, from the owner as a debt.
The Lae City Authority is working in collaboration with the Morobe building board to make sure that they fulfil their roles in making sure structures are legal and in compliance with the building laws.
Ellery further said, “The Board of LCA has put funding aside to support statutory bodies such as the building board to effect what their roles and responsibilities are and the roles of the building board are to make sure that structures are legal and do comply and if they don’t this is the outcome. And unfortunately for the owners, it’s unfortunate for them but they must realize that they live in a city that’s governed by laws, not just local laws but national laws.”