Lands Ministry launches fund for Appiatse explosion victims

The Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources yesterday launched a support fund to provide assistance to persons affected by the fatal explosion which occurred at Appiatse, near Bogoso in the Prestea, Huni-Valley Municipality of the Westrern Region.

MrSamuel AbdulaiJinapor, Minister of Lands and Natural Resources, who launched the fund in Accra, also outdoored a five-member committee to manage the fund by raising sufficient money and supervising its disbursement.

The committee would be chaired by Rev. Joyce Aryee, Founder of Salt and Light Ministries with TetreteOkuamoahSakyi II, Omanhene of WassaAmenfi Traditional Area, Philip Owiredu, Managing Director of CAL Bank and SulemanaKoney, Chief Executive Officer of the Chamber of Mines as other members.

Speaking at the event, he stated that the fund was established on the instructions of President Nana AddoDankwaAkufo-Addo to enable the general public, to among others contribute to support the victims of the deadly incident and reconstruct the community which was brought down by the explosion.

He explained that its availability offers Ghanaians the opportunity to be hospitable and compassionate toward the victims as well as demonstrate care for them.

“The committee has been tasked to raise sufficient funds for the Appiatse Support Fund. They are also to supervise the disbursement of the funds in accordance with the highest standards of integrity and transparency for the sole benefit of the people of Appiatse.

“I am confident that given the calibre of the citizens assembled, they will execute this task in a fair, transparent and prudent manner. I passionately and respectfully call on all Ghanaians and residents of Ghana, companies, civil society organisations and all and sundry to generously contribute to this noble endeavor,” he stated.

On her part, Rev.Aryee expressed gratitude for the privilege and asked for support from corporate organisations, media and the general public to ensure the success of the task.

“We ask that the reason that this Fund has been set up will be fully realised, that the people of Appiatse will know that we live in a nation that is compassionate, under a government that cares deeply for every single person in this nation. And I know that within a short time, we will see great things happening,” she stated.

The explosion, which occurred around midday on Thursday, January 20, resulted from a collision between a truck belonging to Maxam Ghana Limited which was transporting explosives to a mining company, and a tricycle. 

The impact of the collision was said to have caused the explosives to detonate, causing the vehicle to explode.

 The situation was exacerbated by a nearby transformer which also exploded in the process.

Initial reports indicate that about 13 people died in the process, while more than 100 people suffered various injuries. 

The impact of the explosion also caused damage to several houses in the community, leaving many families displaced.

Already, a government delegation led by Vice President, DrMahamuduBawumia, had visited the area to commiserate with the affected residents while several donations have been received in support of the victims.

MrJinapor, who was part of the delegation, assured that the investigations will be thorough, to determine the actual cause of the incident and its aftermath adding that anyone found to have flouted the regulations would be made to face the law.

He assured that the Ministry would implement all recommendations that would result from the investigations, to ensure that such incidents do not occur in future. 

BY CLAUDE NYARKO ADAMS

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