Property worth more than N5 million was lost to fire yesterday, while about 20 people were rendered homeless at a Hausa settlement in Bogobiri near the UJ Esuene Staditum in Calabar, Cross River State.
Imam of Bogobiri Central Mosque, Alhaji Garba Dandali Kano, said the fire outbreak lasted over three hours due to inability of fire fighters to gain access to the scene as a result of bad road. A landlord in the area, Mr. Patrick Edem, also lamented the slow response of the fire service.
Affected persons, who spoke to newsmen said the neighbourhood had been in darkness for over three weeks following a power cut, and that as soon as electricity was restored, there was a fire outbreak. They said the fire may have been caused by a spark in one of the lines. Alhaji Garba Dandali Kano said no member of his family was around when the incident occurred, and that the only thing they had left are the cloths on their bodies.
The imam thanked God that no life was lost, and called on relevant government agencies as well as public spirited individuals to come to their aid. Meanwhile, the state’s Commissioner for Environment, Sandy Onor, has sympathised with the affected persons, and advised members of the public to be careful with electricity. He promised attention of the state government.