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June 3 disaster report: more questions than answers

The announcement by the committee set up by President Mahama to investigate the twin flood and fire disaster that wasted almost 200 lives in June 3 that the inferno was caused by fire on a lit cigarette stub by one Seth Kwesi Ofosu has done little to put conclusion to a matter that took the nation’s breath away.
According to the committee, “the displacement of fuel from the Goil Filling station at Kwame Nkrumah Circle was the intermediate cause;” it added, “the dropping of the lit cigarette stub by Seth Kwesi Ofosu onto the floating fuel was the ultimate or immediate cause of the fire” the committee’s report revealed.
The second quote by the committee on the ultimate cause of the disaster is what has ruffled feathers among sections of the public. Seth – from the logic of the report – dropped the lit cigarette remnant onto the floating fuel and still survived the inferno that his action provoked. Where was Seth standing when he discharged the lit cigarette? How did he survive the inferno? How far did he throw the remnant which made it possible for him to escape the blaze it produced? Who saw him? Things are really not adding up, to say the least.
From the committee’s submission, it is not in doubt that Seth is alive; the chairman had this to say which confirms he is safe and sound, “We are not in the position to determine his [Seth’s] actual status so we have handed him to the security agencies to investigate and arrive at a conclusion whether or not he intentionally caused arson” Chairman of the committee, Justice Isaac Delali Douse, said at press conference to announce the findings last week.
If Seth has been handed over to the security agencies according to the committee, then it is settled that he is counted among the living today. The committee only told us Seth dropped the lit cigarette onto the floating fuel; but where was he exactly? At the filling station? Near the GCB tower? At Vienna city? On the road in front of the filling station? At Barclays bank? In the house adjacent the filling station? Was he in a vehicle?
According to media reports on the disaster, the fuel floated from leaking tanks at the filling station onto the road in front of it. How does fuel, a highly flammable substance, float all over a place, pick signals from a lit cigarette to produce a conflagration and yet, the source of the flame walks out unhurt? Or does the report mean Seth threw the stub and ran to safety to avoid being consumed by the blaze it produced? Guinness book of records should make room for an entry from Ghana because this one is absolutely mind-boggling!
Ghanaians woke up on June 4 this year to witness the heart-wrenching destruction of almost 200 lives following a heavy downpour which was enmeshed in a raging inferno at Kwame Nkrumah Circle. Almost the same number of people sustained varying degrees of injuries and ended up at various medical facilities within the city.
At least the setting up of the committee was to help Ghanaians establish the real cause of the gruesome debacle but the bizarre reason advanced by the committee as the ultimate cause of the tragedy, may do very little to offer any useful clues. That the blaze might have been caused by a cigarette stub is to some extent, reasonable, but the revelation by the same committee making this claim that the man who dropped the cigarette stub is still alive, is what flies in the face of every logic in its claims on the ultimate cause of the fire. Ghanaians need answers to the cause of the disturbing incident, but not those that bother on logical absurdity.
Just a piece of my mind!

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