Accra markets to close at 6 p.m.

AS part of efforts to prevent fire outbreaks at various markets in the Accra metropolis, the Accra Metropolitan Assembly (AMA), has directed all markets to open at 6 a.m. and close at 6 p.m. daily.

It warned that no person other than scheduled officers of AMA, the police and personnel of the Ghana National Fire Service (GNFS), should stay or sleep in any market after 6 p.m.

It also cautioned market users, not to install industrial machines and combustible items without approval from the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG), and GNFS.

A statement signed by the Public Relations Officer of the AMA, Numo Blafo III, in Accra yesterday, said the directives followed a meeting of the Metropolitan Security Committee (METSEC) on Wednesday, January 21.

It said no person should undertake any form of cooking in any market, except the chop bars and restaurant operators, saying that at Nima and Maamobi markets, there should not be spillover of market activities on the streets.

The statement said the AMA, in collaboration with ECG, would engage contractors to disconnect all illegal electrical connections within the markets, and those who would reconnect after the disconnection would be prosecuted.

“All alleys and walkways will be cleared of containers and trading activities in order to create easy access into the markets,” it said.

The statement said a task force had been formed to ensure the implementation of the decisions taken, to prevent fire and threats to lives and property in the event of any fire outbreak in the metropolis.

It said the task force had been authorised to monitor the activities to curtail any form of nuisance at the various markets, casinos, drinking bars, warehouses and night clubs.

The statement said the task force would also visit communities to remove all structures whose locations hindered free movement of people, fire tenders, ambulances and other vehicles.

It urged the public not to block roads indiscriminately for funerals, ‘outdooring’, and other public functions without permission from the Metropolitan Co-ordinating Director.

Night clubs, bars and casinos should also ensure they have fire extinguishers, fire sprinklers, multiple exit points, adequate ventilations, smoke detectors, designated areas for smokers and evidence of insurance.

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