General News of Monday, 9 October 2017
Former President Jerry John Rawlings has said it is time for the country to implement tough measures to effectively put an end to fuel station explosions like the one that happened at Atomic Junction near Madina in Accra which killed seven people and injured 132 others.
“Another sad day for city dwelling on account of the congestion, irresponsibility, and dangers we’ve brought to city life. My deep sympathies to all those affected. Time to implement effective preventive measures. Life is too precious.#AtomicExplosion,” Mr Rawlings tweeted.
Mr Rawlings’ call for preventive measures follows Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia’s comments that the Akufo-Addo-led government will deal with such explosions “once and for all”.
Visiting the scene of Saturday’s gas explosion at Atomic Junction on Sunday in the company of the Attorney General and Minister of Justice; Defence Minister, Minister for the Interior as well as the Minister of Science, Environment, Technology, and Innovation; the Inspector General of Police amongst others, Dr Bawumia hinted at new policies which will solve the problem “once and for all”.
The explosion killed at least seven people and injured 132 others who are being treated at the 37 Military Hospital.
“It’s a very sad and very tragic day” for Ghana, Dr Bawumia told journalists, adding that: “On behalf of the president, I would like to extend my condolences to all the bereaved families and also our sympathies to all those who have been injured and affected.”
“In fact, all of Ghana has been affected, it’s a major tragedy but at the end of the day, this is one too many, this is about the eighth explosion in three years and I think what Ghanaians really want is a solid policy to deal with this matter once and for all; we are going to deal with it.
“It’s not about committees upon committees and committees and nothing gets done. I think that we owe it to the country and the government is going to take this very seriously and discussions were being held last night about the way forward.
“We wouldn’t pre-empt too many things but some new policies are going to come in and those who will try to resist those new policies, I don’t think they would be listened to because it’s important to put the safety of our people above everything else and I think it is in the interest of the country that we actually implement some new policy directions,” Dr Bawumia said.
He said the National Petroleum Authority (NPA), Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Energy Ministry, Ghana Fire Service and all relevant stakeholders will “be involved as we put this new policy in place and we are going to move quite quickly, it’s not going to be one that you wait for weeks for it to happen, it’s going to happen relatively quickly, we pretty much have an idea of what we need to do in terms of policy…” the Vice President noted.
Another sad day for city dwelling on account of the congestion, irresponsibility and dangers we’ve brought to city life. My deep sympathies to all those affected. Time to implement effective preventive measures. Life is too precious.#AtomicExplosion
— Office of JJRawlings (@officeofJJR) October 8, 2017