The Vice President, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, says the briefing he received from the Ghana National Fire Service indicates that a fire from a trader cooking at the new Kejetia market caused the inferno at the facility last week.
According to Dr. Bawumia, the shop owner was cooking inside her shop when the gas cylinder she was using caught fire spreading to a nearby chemical shop, thus destroying 33 shops out of 8,000 shops at the market.
He added that the chemical shop owner amongst others sells combustibles such as carbide, turpentine and gunpowder which exploded.
The Vice President indicated that this was uncovered after a preliminary investigation by the Ghana National Fire Service (GNFS) in collaboration with the National Disaster Management Organisation (NADMO).
Addressing the traders after inspecting the part ravaged by the fire on March 20, the Vice President expressed his empathy to the affected traders assuring them of government’s support.
“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, where they sell gunpowder, carbide, turpentine that resulted in the explosion,” the Vice President narrated.
Dr. Bawumia said, “The fire officers told me that the fire was not caused by an electrical fault but the cooking of food by the shop owner inside her shop, that’s where the fire started”.
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 to allow GNFS to conduct further investigations.
The traders on the other hand have argued that such a move will negatively affect their businesses and have thus vowed to defy the directive.
But the Vice President during his visit said the traders whose shops were not affected could return to the market tomorrow March 21, 2023.