Friday, 13 March 2015

#FridayThe13th: One killed as fire guts 68 rooms in Ebonyi

A 20-year-old girl, Miss Mercy Elom, was yesterday burnt to death as a mysterious fire gutted 68 rooms in Abakaliki, the Ebonyi State capital.
She was among the candidates, who wrote this year’s Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) conducted by the Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB). The deceased was an ICT apprentice at Pastoral Centre, a foremost ICT centre in the town.

The fire, which started about 1am, occurred at 40, Igwe Liga Street, Mile 50, Abakaliki. The house has over 100 rooms.
Miss Elom, who hailed from Onuenyim Agbaja in Izzi Local Government, squatted with her friend, who had travelled.
Items worth millions of naira were destroyed. They included motorcycles, tricycles, documents, refrigerators and other electrical appliances.
One of the victims, whose father is the owner of the house, Elias Igwe, said he was sleeping when noise from residents about the inferno woke him up.
He said: “People were shouting fire, fire. This woke me up. I came downstairs and saw everywhere engulfed by fire. We tried to put it out, but we were helpless because it overpowered us. I contacted the state fire service with the help of the Divisional Police Officer, Kpirikpiri, but the bad road leading to our house affected their movement. Before they arrived, the fire had gutted about 50 rooms.”
While some of the tenants salvaged a few of their property, others were not so lucky, especially the health workers and security officers, who were on night duty.
One of the tenants, Mr. Aleke Celestine, lamented the loss of his vital documents. He appealed to the government to assist them.


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