Wednesday, 19 June 2013

Tackle Fire Outbreaks

The country in recent times has unfortunately recorded unprecedented mysterious fire outbreaks which have triggered off so much fear, panic, pain and outrage among the public. What is even more worrisome and intriguing is the frequency of the fire outbreaks especially in major markets. It is a sad situation which has robbed hundreds of Ghanaians particularly women their means of livelihood to the extent of traumatising them. In all these there were graphic pictures which showed the victims weeping inconsolably to express their grief over the loss. The spate of the fire outbreaks continue to send chills running down the spine of most Ghanaians. In all these tragedies our attitudes and reactions were predictable just as they have been anytime a calamity of such scope and degree happened in the country. The rumor mongering machine was set at full throttle while suspicions and groundless conclusions were set at full gear. The media living to their calling to get information across to the public have created the platform for discussion of the issues. The court of public opinions, experts and self-imposed specialists on firefighting were heard all over as they tried in a desperate attempt to diagnose the problems and prescribe an anti-dote. The blame game machine was activated as to who should have done what and who did not do what. After several days and weeks of rhetoric, just like the proverbial vulture we reverted to our comfort zones.

Interestingly, we seem to know the solutions to all the problems which confront us as a people. Ironically the naked truth is that most of these solutions are not result oriented.
Is it not probably because we seem to diagnose problems from only a narrow angle or perspective and eventually tackle them in the best way we only perceive and appreciate them? Could it also be said that we lack the political will and discipline to carry out policies programs and plans to their logical conclusions? Is it also possible that we have become so religious and so sacred in our beliefs that we expect things to happen anyway and any how just like manna from heaven? It is heartwarming that President John Mahamah has visited the site of the latest fire outbreak where he expressed concern about the incident at Agbobgloshie. Much as this shows an expression of sympathy it still remains an unavoidable truth that rules and regulations which govern the location of markets are dead. We are all aware of the wanton illegal connections at our markets .We are also witnesses to the use of naked fires in the markets with impunity. Are we not also aware that the architectural designs of our market today do not meet standards? Have we not witnessed with shock and dismay when fire tenders struggle to find access routes to places of fire outbreaks? So why do we always attribute that attitudinal issue to spirituality or occultism, always blaming the devil for the least problem or even saying that the country is under a spell. Let us for heaven sake for once face reality. We have made mistakes in the past. However it is just natural and normal for human beings to commit blunders as this goes to emphasize our imperfections. But on the contrary, we need to draw lessons from the past so that we become better persons and not bitter people. One time German chancellor, statesman and soldier, Otto von Bismarck stated, “The problems of today cannot be solved by long speeches and beautiful rhetoric but with iron and blood.” I am not by any stretch of imagination recommending any militant and radical approach to the problem which confronts us today where people’s blood will be shed. We should adopt a very serious approach to dealing with the fire outbreaks by cracking the whip, no matter whose ass is gored. As appropriately noted by Motivational Writer, Napoleon Hill, “anything we conceive in our minds and believe in we shall achieve.” It is fact that as a people, we do not have the luxury of time to do anything casual, because it has the tendency to cause casualties.

BY: ALFRED HUGHES, A JOURNALIST .

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