By:brightwebtv.com/nana asare barimah
Wild fire has gutted tens of make-shift residential structures, amid unconfirmed reports of missing children, at Aboabo Dabgomba Line in the Asokore Mampong Municipality, the Ashanti Region capital.
The slum is home to thousands of porters popularly known as ‘kayayei’ and scrap dealers. About 200 head potters and scrap dealers have been displaced.
The fire began on the evening of Friday, 14 February 2020.
Fire fighters were on the scene to quench the inferno but the unauthorised structures made it difficult for them to have access.
OTEC News’ reporter Nana Akwasi Owusu Achiaw, reported that personnel from the National Fire Service battled long hours to bring the raging inferno under control which covers a vast area which is difficult to navigate due to very undulating terrain in total darkness following a blackout.
It is unclear what triggered the Friday fire but eye-witnesses say it started late afternoon when most of the occupants were still at work at the markets.
One of the volunteers who tried unsuccessfully with others to quench the fire, says the fire started from a 2-bedroom wooden structure there and spread rapidly to other areas, resulting in the collapse of a power pylon.
“We were here when they called us that some two rooms, the person is not in so the fire was burning inside that room so we should come and check. We struggled to quench the fire and so we were to call the fire service.”
According to him, the fire spread to other areas before the fire service personnel were called in.
“The fire reached the shade. After the shade, it reached here again. As for the pole (pylon), all we heard was boom”.
It took fire service personnel several minutes to access the slum.
The ravaging fire razed hundreds of shops in areas as big as the size of about five standard football pitches.
The destruction of the high voltage pylon is blamed for the spontaneous power outage in surrounding communities such as Asawasi, Aboabo Number One, Akwatia Line, among others.
Fire personnel managed to bring the fire under control at about 11: 20 p.m, several hours after battling the blaze.
Scrap dealers were seen scavenging for scraps from the debris a few minutes after Fire Service doused the fire.