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Punish local authorities for negligence in the collapse of the Ejuraman Anglican SHS dining hall

Punish local authorities for negligence in the collapse of the Ejuraman Anglican SHS dining hall

In an interview with Johnnie Hughes on the 3FM Sunrise Morning Show, Sampson Wolanyo Deklu, Technical Lead at the Bureau of Public Safety, called for stricter punishment to be applied to officials of local assemblies whose negligence caused the collapse of the dining hall of Ejuraman Anglican Secondary School in the Ejura Sekyedumase Municipal District of Ashanti Region.

Ejuraman Anglican SHS students were hospitalised at Ejura Government Hospital after their school’s dining hall collapsed on them during a downpour on Monday night. According to reports, the structure has been in disrepair for some time, but all attempts to persuade local authorities to have the dilapidated dining hall rebuilt have failed.

“We have been complaining about the deplorable state of this building but nothing has been done to address our concern. “How would the government feel if we died as a result of this disaster?” The students expressed their displeasure to 3FM’s reporter.

According to Sampson Deklu, the works departments of the various local assemblies are unable to conduct proper assessments of buildings on a regular basis in order to ensure their safety and integrity.

“I don’t think these are done, we don’t really do them right even from when the building permit is issued. Everyone is free to do whatever they want. Even after the building is completed, no assessment of its use is performed. That is why we keep having these problems time after time,” he believes.

He stated that building collapses will continue until authorities live up to expectations and do what is expected of them. “Once they happen we just talk about them for a while and we all go back to sleep again and nothing happens until there is another disaster. Most of these cases result in casualties, with people losing their lives. People who sleep on the job should be chastised. We will continue to advocate, but those who are paid by our taxes to ensure that the right things are done are not producing results,” Mr. Deklu stated.

He went on to say that it takes an expert to determine whether a structure is safe, so assemblies should be held accountable for ensuring that children are educated in safe school structures. At all levels of construction, supervision and standard enforcement should be followed.

According to the Bureau of Public Safety’s Technical Lead, punishing people for failing to perform their duties to ensure the integrity of buildings and the safety of the public will serve as a deterrent to others who will occupy such positions in the future.

He emphasised the importance of the Ghanaian government adequately funding local assemblies in order for them to carry out their mandate effectively.



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