Vice President Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia has assured victims of the new Kejetia market fire incident of government’s support.
According to him, reports from officers from the Ghana National Fire Service (GNFS) indicate that the inferno was caused by a shop owner who was cooking with a gas cylinder, and it escalated because of the combustible materials that are sold around the area the fire started.
Speaking to the traders after inspecting the fire scene, the Vice President announced that part of the facility that was not affected by the fire will be reopened for business on Tuesday despite the earlier directive by the board for the information for the market to be closed for one more week.
“We are here to empathise with you following the fire that gutted the market. We are equally affected by the sad situation, that’s why I’m here today to show my concerns. I was taken around the market by the GNFS, NADMO officials, and they told me that through their investigations, the market caught fire as a result of cooking by one of the traders, whose shop was close to a nearby chemical shop,” he said.
“You are all worried that you are not working now because the market is closed. I have had some talks with GNFS so tomorrow, March 21, you will start working. I talked to President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo this morning before coming here. He told me to inform you that traders whose shops were affected will be supported,” Vice President assured.
He commended the fire officers for doing a yeoman’s job by stopping the fire from spreading to other shops.
“We will all attest to the fact that the fire officers did a great job in quenching the fire from spreading to other shops. The fire gutted 33 shops out of 8000 shops, so I want to commend them greatly. They did a yeoman’s job, both GNFS and NADMO officials,” Dr. Bawumia commended.
The Vice President also assured that government will strictly implement the recommendations of the committee that would be set up to probe the recent fire incident.
“Government will work on the recommendations of the committee that will probe the incident,” he noted.
The Vice President was accompanied by his wife 2nd lady Samira Bawumia, New Patriotic Party (NPP) national, regional, executives, ministers, MPs, constituency executives amongst others.
The board of the new Kejetia Market also known as the Kumasi City Markets Limited on March 19, directed that the facility should be closed for one more week starting Monday, March 20.
This comes after the market was gutted by fire on Wednesday, March 15, which led to the destruction of items worth millions of Ghana cedis.
Following the incident, the facility was reopened after 12 noon the next day and was later closed down for three days for further assessment.
Traders at the market had vowed to defy the directive for the facility to be closed for one more week.
According to the leadership of the traders, together with transport operators, they will go to the facility and engage in their usual activities despite the board’s directive.