KNUST Hostel Fire Victims Count Losses

THE ASPIRATIONS of some students of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) to begin a new semester with vigour suffered a major blow after a ferocious fire engulfed their plush Crystal Rose Hostel at Kentinkrono in Kumasi.

The inferno, which began around 6:00 pm, destroyed various items including books, cash, certificates, laptops, air conditioners, TV sets, and other electrical gadgets belonging to the students worth several millions of Ghana Cedis.

Thirty-seven rooms on the last

floor of the three-storey hostel which Ghanaian and other foreign students, especially Nigerians, occupied were completely consumed by the fire.

Luckily, no one got hurt or died in the blaze as security guards at the facility helped rescue students who were trapped.

The victims were stranded, hanging around the facility as of yesterday during a visit by DAILY GUIDE after they were denied access into the building.

More than four fire tenders tackled the blaze which lasted for close to four hours, according to some students; even though they said firefighters were somehow late in arriving at the scene.

Kofi Ofosu-Ennin, one of the victims who spoke to DAILY GUIDE, indicated that “because of the short vacation, most of us left behind our things particularly books, laptops, refrigerators, television sets, clothing, shoes and other personal effects which were all consumed in the fire”.

One of the Nigerian students, Udolka Ekene, who is in his third year reading Petroleum Engineering, told DAILY GUIDE that the inferno that raged till 8:30 pm burnt all his credentials including primary and secondary schools’ certificates, receipt of school fees and passport.

He said he was fast asleep when he was suddenly awoken by screams from outsiders who saw the fire spreading.

All attempts by the combined team of fire-fighters from the Ghana National Fire Service from KNUST and Regional Headquarters to limit the concentration of the inferno proved abortive as it spread rapidly, engulfing the entire top floor consisting of 37 rooms, a security guard, Kojo Samuel said.

Fire officials said investigation was underway to establish the cause of the incident, which some students attributed to electric power fluctuation.

Management of the university and the hostel and executives of the Students Representative Council were locked up in a meeting to decide the fate of the affected students.

FROM Ernest Kofi Adu, Kumasi

Last modified on Sunday, 12 January 2014 21:58
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