DAILY GUIDE can confirm that 20 people, including students who went on an excursion, sustained various degrees of injury when they fell from the Bunso Arboretum walkway canopy in the East Akyem Municipality of the Eastern Region on Wednesday.
The Republic Day holiday makers, mostly identified to be JHS graduates from Nkawkaw, who sustained injuries in their necks, hands, waists and legs, are currently receiving treatment at the Tafo Government Hospital and the Hawa Memorial Hospital at Osiem, while one lady, who is in a critical condition, has been admitted at the Intensive Care Unit of the Koforidua Hospital.
DAILY GUIDE investigations on Thursday revealed that when it was getting late in the evening the management of the recreational resort decided to let more people than usual climb the canopy, and when they were walking on it, the second bridge collapsed, leading to the merrymakers getting injured.
It was gathered that the walkway canopy was constructed last year May by a private developer under an arrangement with the Ghana government with the objective of bringing more tourists to the area.
The Bunso Arboretum eco-tourism forest reserve is managed by the Plant Genetic Resources Research Institute (PGRRI) of the Centre for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR).
About ten victims out of the 20, who spoke to DAILY GUIDE at Hawa Memorial Hospital, hinted that the canopy was overcrowded, and that some guys among them were shaking the bridges in the middle line, which over-turned and felt down. Some of the students stated that they fell on one another thus, the pains they were feeling.
Mr. Kenneth Akuffo Asare, the chief executive officer of the centre, told DAILY GUIDE that one of the tree branches fell on the canopy’s thread that was holding it and got snapped, adding that it happened after they had closed and so the students went to climb the canopy without the knowledge of management.
He debunked the earlier reports that the thread was weak, adding that over 300 people used the facility on Wednesday. According to him, management had been maintaining it on daily basis.
Meanwhile, the matter is currently under investigation by the Kyebi Divisional Police Command.
FROM Daniel Bampoe, Akyem -Bunso
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