Fire Destroys Properties Worth Thousands Of Cedis At Makola (VIDEOS)


Properties worth thousands of cedis have been destroyed after fire gutted some shops at Makola in Accra.


According to an eyewitness, a billboard fixed in front of one of the shops on the top floor generated the fire.


Speaking exclusively to Thinknewsonline.com, he said "It's a billboard that has caused all these oh. I called on the Fire Service officers but they were slow to respond. Just a billboard has led to a three-story building to be in flames"


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He added that on reaching the scene, he observed that the fire tanker was without water adding that the officers had to drive to a nearby hydrant before it could pump water.


The eyewitness further expressed his disappointment in the fire officers having little logistics.


He appealed to the government to come to the aid of the fire service and furnish them with logistics.


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On his part, Head of Communication at the Ghana National Fire Service, Divisional Officer (DO1), Ellis Robinson Okoe appealed to the public to desist from lambasting fire officers.


"We are human beings, you don't expect us to know every location that there is a fire outbreak. The public should take it easy on us. Ass you can see we are doing everything possible to deal with the situation"


He also mentioned that until the fire is completely quenched, none of his men will leave the scene. "There are fires inside. We have to quench all the fire before we leave here today ad that is the work we are doing"


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DO1 Okoe hinted that it took about 9 fire tenders plus one from the Armed Forces to deal with the situation.


"You see don't listen to these allegations. You know when people are affected, they say lots of things. So don't listen to them. Listen to me, I am the Professional and I am telling you that we have been able to bring the fire under control"


He added that although the top floors have been badly affected, his men have been able to protect valuables on the first two floors.


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DO1 commended and thanked the Mayor of the Accra Metropolitan Assembly (A.M.A), Mohammed Adjei Sowah for making available a petrol station which fuelled the fire tankers for free.


Speaking to Journalists, the Mayor of the Accra Metropolitan Assembly (A.M.A), Mohammed Adjei Sowah commended the Ghana National Fire Service (GNFS) for their tremendous work at controlling the situation.


He said "The fire started around 9 am and immediately, the Fire Service was alerted. We have a fire tender about 100 meters from the location. They all came likewise some from the Ministries, Head Office, Circle, all of them rushed to this place within 10 minutes battling the fire"


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The Mayor described the lack of enough water at the Central Business District of Accra as one of the challenges facing the Ghana Fire Service.


He added that it made it difficult for the Fire-team to continue to stay on location to replenish the fire adding that the pressure from the hydrant was very low.


"So they had to go a little far as Circle and other areas. That has been one of the challenges that have prolonged the fire. They ran out of fuel but since there is a fuelling station close by, I directed all the fire tenders to go to that station anytime that they ran out of fuel at the cost of A.M.A, so that they will have enough fuel but the main challenge has been the low pressure of water in the Central Business District"


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He also added that although the cause of the fire is unknown, lots of the materials raised down by the fire are inflammable.


Reacting to compensating the affected persons, he said "I don't know for now. Our first instincts are to look at the fire, extinguish the fire, save lives and properties, and then after our investigations, we will look at some of these situations"


The National Welfare Officer of the Ghana Union of Traders Association (​GUTA), Benjamin Yeboah said "This is really an unfortunate situation because this building houses lots of our members and some of them have been in this building for years, so it's quite unfortunate"


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He said "What is the use of fire hydrant when it's locked and when we need it, we cannot access it. That is really unfortunate"


He challenged the Ghana National Fire Service to work hand-in-hand with the Ghana Water Company to ensure that the various hydrants are filled with water.


"I have been in Makola for year and we have fire hydrants here so I wonder why we have to go very far for water. I don't understand. It is an unfortunate incident. We have to learn from it"


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"I am in this area and I quite remember we told the shop owners to have fire extinguishers which some of them did so I think this will be another thing for them to look at and ensure that they all get these fire extinguishers"


He described Monday's fire outbreak as the biggest to have happened in Makola.


The Member of Parliament for Odododiodio Constituency, Nii Lante Vanderpuiye also rushed to the scene and was briefed about the level of damages caused by the fire.


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He assured that an investigation will be done to know what really caused the fire.


The NDC MP further appealed to the shop owners to desist from illegal connections.


President of Traders Advocate in Makola, Kojo Amoateng said "The Fire Service has really done well. People should stop lambasting them"


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He also urged his members to insure their shops adding that having insurance, helps save lots of issues.


"You nailed it. Everything got to do with education but we live in a country that people are refusing to teach and people are refusing to learn"


He charged the public not to be disappointed in the Fire Service adding that their work today was very commendable.


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General Secretary of Traders Advocates, Nana Poku also mentioned that although the fire service did a good job.


He called for more than enough fire hydrants in the Central Business District adding that it will help the service personnel work effectively.


"Per our initial observation, the one and only fire hydrant that was working had a partial pressure in it and a hydrant is supposed to have that speed and power to fill this tank within 10 minutes and if we have a hydrant and it cannot have pressure in it, what can the fire service do," he said.


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Below are some videos:


Story by: Joshua Kwabena Smith



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