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01.02.2006 Regional News

Bushfire sweeps through community


Subinso, (B/A) Feb. 1, GNA - A bushfire has swept through Subinso Number One, a farming community in Brong-Ahafo Region on the Wenchi-Wa Highway, destroying about 100 thatched houses and displaced more than 600 people.

Personal effects such, as clothing, furniture, sewing machines, bicycles, two corn mills, cooking utensils as well as quantities of foodstuffs including maize, yam, groundnuts, millet, bambara beans and pepper valued at several millions of cedis have been destroyed by the fire.

Mr. Seidu Munumi-Fiiri, Assemblyman of Subinso Number One and Amponsakrom Electoral area who conducted the Ghana News Agency round to inspect the affected houses and the conditions of the people on Monday said some landlords have lost millions of cedis as they kept their monies in their rooms.

Mr. Bismark Addae, the Secretary of the local branch of the Ghana Private Road Transport Union (GPRTU) at Subinso Number Two who resided at Subinso Number One announced that he lost a cash amount of 13.7 million cedis kept in his bedroom through the disaster.

According to the assemblyman, the incident occurred on Sunday January 22 when many of the people had left for their farms and that the few left behind also found it very difficult to control the fire. Mr. Mumuni-Fiiri said for lack of transport at that particular hour, message could not reach officials of the Ghana National Fire Service (GNFS) at Wenchi in time and before they cold cover the distance of 15 kilometres to the place, almost all belonging had been burnt.

The six classrooms of the local Primary School in the area and the Local Mosque have been taken over by the displaced people as their sleeping places. The District Secretariat of the National Disaster Management Organization (NADMO) has managed to provide two tents for the community but they are woefully inadequate and that some people even sleep in the open places of the buildings.

Mr. Oppong Yeboah, Wenchi District Fire Officer expressed grave concern about how the people of the communities have refused to heed to the advice and given them about the dangers and effects of bushfires. According to Mr. Yeboah, the community of Subinso Number one has suffered from such fire disasters on three occasions and during harmattan seasons.

Mr. Yeboah disclosed that his men managed to fight a recent bushfire at Adubie, one of the farming communities and also controlled a domestic fire that started in a drinking bar called "Simple Bar" Kaamu a suburb of Wenchi.

The District Fire Officer complained of the lack of access roads to some areas of Wenchi township as some people have erected structures at the pavements that lead to the streets and stressed the need for the removal of those barriers and the fire service personnel would make easy movements to fight fire in the community.

Meanwhile, Mr. James Asare, the President of the Roman Catholic Church at Subinso Number two has donated second hand clothings worth about 700 cedis to the disaster victims in the area.