Member of Parliament for the Subin constituency has spoken following an uncontrollable fire that ravaged Asafo Market in the capital of the Ashanti region Sunday evening.
“My initial reaction is one of sadness, especially with Easter celebrations going on,” Eugene Antwi told Luv FM’s Erastus Asare Donkor on the Super Morning Show Monday.
What caused the blaze, which initially began on Friday, is “quite strange,” Antwi acknowledged, but he suspects that outdated equipment could have been a contributing factor. His solution is to work with the National Disaster Management Organization (NADMO) to provide 24-hour security for the market. ‘That is the only way to counter such fires,” he said.
Regional NADMO coordinator Kwabenya Nsenkyire told Asare Donkor that it is too early to assess why the fire happened, but he assured market traders that he would work with the Assembly to “put up cameras everywhere.”
“For now, we are mourning with the aggrieved,” he lamented.
Meanwhile, market traders are “angry” about the fire, which has left a permanent scar on one of the countries most prominent cities.
One woman was almost brought to tears as she recounted what happened. The trader, whose name has been withheld, told Joy FM that she lost all her belongings and money. She suspects arson.
“Arson is what everyone thinks. The mayor himself thinks its arson,” Asare Donkor reported.
Another trader, whose family has been selling at the market for over 45 years, says that he “can confirm that the electric fittings are what caused the fire.”
“There are naked and illegal cables all over. They have to be at least 18 years old.”
The fire is the second one in three days and over 40 shops have collapsed, according to reports. Statistics show that market fires have become increasingly common due to their congested nature. Last year, the Ghana National Fire Service (GNFS) recorded over 5,000 fire outbreaks across the country.