By Ishmael Sallieu Koroma
The death toll in last Friday’s Fire tanker disaster in the Sierra Leone capital, Freetown, has risen to 115 according to the Director of communications Mohamed Lamrana Bah at the country’s agency for disaster Management (NDMA).
The accident happened when a fuel tanker collided with another heavy vehicle causing the fuel tanker to damage which later exploded causing huge blast killing many and destroying several properties nearby the area.
‘’ We now have 115 people dead as a result of the Fire incident, 36 are in critical conditions of the 62 currently hospitalized. We have received several donations from donors and private companies like Commodity Trading Company with 500 bags of 25kg , the EU has helped us , Leone Rock Mining Company including WHO with medical supplies ,’’ Bah said.
The country have started receiving this Sunday donations from the World Health Organization (WHO) of about 6.6 tonnes of medical supplies additionally today the Sierra Leone government received 15 tonnes of assorted medical supplies from the United Arab Emirates
On Monday, the Sierra Leone government buried over 80 (eighty) of those killed in the wellington disaster after an inter faith service and mass was held at the Bolima Cemetery, just outskirts the capital, Freetown where President Julius Maada Bio, religious leaders, community stakeholders and families who lost their loved ones in the disaster.
In his statement President Bio said: “To those here who have lost their direct relations and to all mourners here and fellow citizens, this is a very sad event. We are here to pay respect to our brothers and sisters who lost their lives in a very tragic event. As the pastor said, death is inevitable. But it doesn’t have to be too sudden. It doesn’t have to be too gruesome”.
He added that the sad event was a huge loss to the families as it was also to the nation whilst praying to God to have mercy on the souls of the departed. The President emphasized that much as it was good that they had given a dignified burial to the dead, it was also better that they looked after those in the hospitals and prayed for them.
“We implore the medical team to give the injured enough comfort so that we don’t lose more people. As a country, we should always be united, especially in times of grief. This is not the time to blame people. This is a moment of reflection. I have said that we will investigate the disaster but also agree as a society what do we do to avert similar tragedies,’’ President Bio said.
Bio added that what happened is preventable in a rule-based society stating that there should be law and order thus the reason as a society we make laws to avoid catastrophes like these.
“This is a sad and solemn farewell event. Let me also use the occasion to thank all those who have helped with the situation and to announce that we have received support from WHO to effectively look after those in excruciating pains resulting from the burns,” President Bio added.