IT HAS emerged that aside the destruction of goods and wares, the affected traders in the Kumasi Kejetia Market fire also lost undisclosed amount of money.
The Wednesday evening blaze, which swept through the ultramodern market around 5pm, destroyed a number of shops and the valuable items that were stored in them.
When the fire was eventually doused by firefighters after about three hours, an undisclosed amount of Ghana Cedis notes were burnt by the inferno.
Some of the affected traders, amid sobs, disclosed to journalists that they keep their money in the market but unfortunately they lost huge amount of money to the fire.
50 Shops Affected
Meanwhile, it has been announced that 20 shops and the items that were stored in them, got burnt into ashes during the fire outbreak.
Nana Prempeh, one of the leaders of the Kejetia traders, told the media that 54 shops in Kejetia were affected by the fire, with 20 shops totally burnt.
“Twenty shops were totally gutted by the blaze, four shops were affected partially and additional 20 shops were forcibly broke into for access to quench the fire,” he disclosed.
According to Nana Prempeh, the managers of the market were yet to identify other shops at Kejetia that were also affected by the water that was used to fight the inferno.
Nana Prempeh also announced that the market had officially been closed for three days, following a suggestion from the Ashanti Regional Security Council (REGSEC).
He, however, said traders who deal in perishable goods have been given the opportunity to remove their wares out of the market and sell them somewhere to avert losses.
In a related development, the Ashanti Regional Minister, Simon Osei Mensah, who is also head of REGSEC, toured the market yesterday to assess the damage.
He suggested that the market should be closed to the traders and the public for at least three days, so that the place could be cleaned before it would be reopened.
The Ashanti Regional Minister, who was certainly not happy about the damage caused by the inferno, said the cause of the fire outbreak would be investigated.
Cause of Fire
Meanwhile, the cause of the Kejetia inferno was still under investigation when this story was being filed yesterday. Firefighters, however, have begun the probe.
It has also emerged that no death was recorded during the fire outbreak. Reports suggested that some traders collapsed after inhaling smoke, but they were resuscitated.
However, there were reports that some traders sustained body injuries, especially those that were trapped in the upper floor and had to use ropes to descend to the ground floor.
FROM I.F. Joe Awuah Jnr., Kumasi