Monday, February 1, 2010

‘Everything Left in the Fire': Blaze Wrecks Saye Town; Hundreds homeless

Everything Left in the Fire': Blaze Wrecks Saye Town; Hundreds homeless

SAYE TOWN UNDER FIRE: The community before the fire disaster was densely populated consisting of sq uatters and renters. For some time now, the Community has been taken over by Zinc and Mat houses that were jammed up with no alleys in between. One could sit on the doorstep of their house, and look into the other person’s house or room.

Saye Town, Monrovia -


Madam Korto Johnny is left with nothing. All she ever worked for vanished into thin air Sunday night, courtesy of a massive fire which struck the Saye Town Community and rendered several residents homeless.

“I was not able to take out my market money. I just collected L$4000, 00 and US$10.00 along with two call phones, Television, Bed, Dresser and furniture. Everything left in the fire, but I thank God for our lives,” the marketer explained to a reporter shortly after the fire.

The unforeseen disaster left over 20 structures damage, and hundreds of people homeless.

Madam Korto explained that the fire started around 8 p.m., while she was getting ready for bed. “I heard people shouting outside and telling us to get outside because fire war burning the house. By the time I came outside, I saw the fire coming from the Kpelle People house, and it had caught our own. I ran inside and quickly collected my sister’s children and few things that I could get my hands on and ran outside.”

The unforeseen disaster left over 20 structures damage, and hundreds of people homeless.

The community before the fire disaster was densely populated consisting of squatters and renters. For some time now, the Community has been taken over by Zinc and Mat houses that were jammed up with no alleys in between. One could sit on the doorstep of their house, and look into the other person’s house or room.

The Saye Town Community is located behind the Green Land Supermarket and extending to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on 3rd Street in Sinkor.

Standing on the road side near the ECO Bank Office in Sinkor, were two ladies with three children who had managed to grab a few bundles of clothes and anything they could possibly lay their hands on when the fire started. One of them was Madam Korto.

‘Have to start over’ - Only able to takeout displaced bags

Two children whose home was engulfed in the blaze await help.

The depressed marketer said: “I heard it was the Kpelle people son called Oppan who came home drunk and went to sleep and left the candle on and it fell on the floor mat than it caught the mattress. This is how the fire started to spread and caught our house. Nothing happen to him, they got him out before the fire could get worse”. I am standing on the road because; I have called some of my people to come for us to spend the night because we don’t have anywhere to go.”

Mrs. Agnes Karmo, another victim says she was renting a room for US$5.00 in the house that got burnt. “I was only able to take out two displaced bags along with my three children. I have lose, because I left over L$25,000 and some goods worth over L$15,000, so I will just have to start life over.”

Asked how many houses was burnt, Karmo answered; “The house were more than twenty, because they were all jammed up together so the fire didn’t waste time to catch the other houses. We have plenty mat and Zinc houses that are quick to burn, so the least mistake you make to keep candle on, you will harm other people.”

‘Friend is crying’

UNMIL fire service truck arrived on the scene and was instrumental in putting out the fire. Although the fire truck ran out of water in the process.

Madam Karmo also disclosed that her next door neighbor was looking for her son who had just taken surgery. “My friend is crying and looking for her big son, who had just taken surgery. She said she left her son in the room to go and buy bread on the road, but upon her arrival, she saw the whole place in flame, so she does not know if he left in and got burn or someone took him out.”

UNMIL fire service truck arrived on the scene and was instrumental in putting out the fire. Although the fire truck ran out of water in the process.

For one night at least resident were thankful that UNMIL were the saviors for the night. As a reporter left the scene, a Red Cross Ambulance was waiting and calling for wounded people to get on board.

All across the scenes engulf in the blaze were antsy residents looking for answers and a bit of hope. Madam Karmo said she called some of relatives to come and help because she and others had nowhere else to go. “I don’t have anywhere to sleep. We want the government to help us because we have no place to go.

Reporter Mae Azango can be reached at mazango@FrontPageAfrica.com or 077-545-960.

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Everyone is a genius. But if you judge a fish on its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid. – A Einstein

Drawing the line in Liberia

Crimes sponsored, committed, or masterminded by handful of individuals cannot be blamed upon an entire nationality. In this case, Liberians! The need for post-war justice is a step toward lasting peace, stability and prosperity for Liberia. Liberia needs a war crimes tribunal or some credible legal forum that is capable of dealing with atrocities perpetrated against defenseless men, women and children during the country's brutal war. Without justice, peace shall remain elusive and investment in Liberia will not produce the intended results. - Bernard Gbayee Goah



Men with unhealthy characters should not champion any noble cause

They pretend to advocate the cause of the people when their deeds in the dark mirror nothing else but EVIL!!
When evil and corrupt men try to champion a cause that is so noble … such cause, how noble it may be, becomes meaningless in the eyes of the people - Bernard Gbayee Goah.

If Liberia must move forward ...

If Liberia must move forward in order to claim its place as a civilized nation amongst world community of nations, come 2017 elections, Liberians must critically review the events of the past with honesty and objectivity. They must make a new commitment to seek lasting solutions. The track records of those who are presenting themselves as candidates for the position of "President of the Republic of Liberia" must be well examined. Liberians must be fair to themselves because results from the 2011 elections will determine the future of Liberia’s unborn generations to come - Bernard Gbayee Goah

Liberia's greatest problem!

While it is true that an individual may be held responsible for corruption and mismanagement of funds in government, the lack of proper system to work with may as well impede the process of ethical, managerial, and financial accountability - Bernard Gbayee Goah

What do I think should be done?

The situation in Liberia is Compound Complex and cannot be fixed unless the entire system of government is reinvented.
Liberia needs a workable but uncompromising system that will make the country an asylum free from abuse, and other forms of corruption.
Any attempt to institute the system mentioned above in the absence of rule of law is meaningless, and more detrimental to Liberia as a whole - Bernard Gbayee Goah

Liberia's Natural Resources
Besides land water and few other resources, most of Liberia’s dependable natural resources are not infinite, they are finite and therefore can be depleted.
Liberia’s gold, diamond, and other natural resources will not always be an available source of revenue generation for its people and its government. The need to invent a system in government that focuses on an alternative income generation method cannot be over emphasized at this point - Bernard Gbayee Goah

Liberia needs a proper system
If Liberians refuse to erect a proper system in place that promotes the minimization of corruption and mismanagement of public funds by government institutions, and individuals, there will come a time when the value of the entire country will be seen as a large valueless land suited on the west coast of Africa with some polluted bodies of waters and nothing else. To have no system in place in any country is to have no respect for rule of law. To have no respect for rule of law is to believe in lawlessness. And where there is lawlessness, there is always corruption - Bernard Gbayee Goah

Solving problems in the absence of war talks

As political instability continues to increase in Africa, it has become abundantly clear that military intervention as a primary remedy to peace is not a durable solution. Such intervention only increases insecurity and massive economic hardship. An existing example which could be a valuable lesson for Liberia is Great Britain, and the US war on terror for the purpose of global security. The use of arms whether in peace keeping, occupation, or invasion as a primary means of solving problem has yield only little results. Military intervention by any country as the only solution to problem solving will result into massive military spending, economic hardship, more fear, and animosity as well as increase insecurity. The alternative is learning how to solve problems in the absence of war talks. The objective of such alternative must be to provide real sustainable human security which cannot be achieved through military arm intervention, or aggression. In order to achieve results that will make the peaceful coexistence of all mankind possible, there must be a common ground for the stories of all sides to be heard. I believe there are always three sides to every story: Their side of the story, Our side of the story, and The truthBernard Gbayee Goah

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