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30.06.2006 Disaster

Two Children Perish In Fire Outbreak

By Graphic
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Barely 24 hours after two children had been killed when fire engulfed the kiosk in which they were living, along with 30 others, at Soddom and Gomorrah in Accra on Wednesday, squatters displaced by the fire have rebuilt their structures.

The squatters used some of the burnt pieces of wood, as well as new ones they procured, to rebuild their structures.

The fire, believed to have been caused by a lighted candle between 3.00 a.m. and 5.00 a.m., gutted the kiosk in which Paa Kwesi, two, and Maame Yaa, one, were sleeping, spread to 30 other wooden structures and razed them down too.

More than 100 squatters affected by the fire claimed that their money and goods worth millions of cedis had been destroyed in the fire.

The spectacle at the scene of the fire was a nasty one as the crowded slum, which is posing a big headache to city planners, since moves to eject the people in the area who have been declared squatters has proved futile.

Kofi Sarpong, one of the victims of the fire, told the Daily Graphic that they had to damage a pipeline to use the water to control the fire which took them about two hours to fight.

He said personnel of the Ghana National Fire Service got to the scene later after the fire had been put out.

A source at the Old Fadama Police Station which confirmed the incident told the Daily Graphic that it got the information at about 7.00 a.m. and a team of policemen who went to the scene conveyed the bodies of Paa Kwesi and Maame Yaa to the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital mortuary.

Sarpong, whose structure was burnt down beyond repairs, said the fire was started by a candle which was lit by Paa Kwesi's grandmother.

He said when the fire started, Paa Kwesi's mother took away one of her sons, leaving behind Paa Kwesi and Maame Yaa in the care of the old lady.

Attempts by the Daily Graphic to get the mothers of the deceased proved futile, since they were said to have vacated the area.

Story by Musah Yahaya Jafaru

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