–2 Escaped Death With Severe Burns

— Appeal Govt to Intensify Effort in Sanitizing Product

By Nwogha Ndubuisi, Abakaliki

Two persons have luckily escaped death by chance in Jemeni Street, Abakaliki Urban following a kerosene fire incident which they bought for domestic use within the week but unknown to them that it was adulterated.

The first incident was on Friday evening at 31 Jemeni Street when an aged mother who identified herself as Mrs.Elizabeth Igwe, narrated that on the fateful night,there was power outage which prompted her to use the family lantern inorder to set mosquito net.

According to her, when she lighten up the lantern, it engulfed on fire and razed some part of her hand but was rescued alive with her grand daughter.

Chinenye with sympathizer

In her words,” I finished preparing Abacha and was resting when they ceased our light.

“I got up and on the process of lightning my lantern after adding some kerosene my little grand daughter of 4-year bought for me in the market, the lantern exploded and engulfed my body and the family wardrobe where it burnt all my clothes which I quickly raised alarm.

“With the intervention of my son and neighbours, the fire was put off and I was rushed to the hospital for treatment and I returning all glory to God for saving my life.

“What I am telling the general public is to stop patronizing road side kerosene sellers, rather, should go to filling station to save themselves and entire family of untimely death.

In another account at No.40 Jemeni Street,a girl in her early twenties, Miss Chinenye Judith Ezekwena, on Tuesday morning, 7th October,2020 was cooking with firewood when she poured some quantity of kerosene they bought from a road side seller.

On the spot,the kerosene engulfed on fire and caught her night gown including some kitchen equipment and leaving all her body with severe burns.

The victim,miss Chinenye told us that while she was struggling to pull off the gown, the kerosene fire had affected her legs,hands and some part of her face.

Miss Chinenye with burns all over her body treated with fresh fermented cassava (akpu) at home.

In her speech,” After setting firewood and place pot on fire as usual, I lighten a stick of matches but to my amazement the fire exploded on my wears and burnt my body.

“I am appealing to the state government to embark on street overhauling by ensuring that those in kerosene selling business identity their supplying point who must be a filling station as to control adulterated kerosene patronage by innocent users.

The mother of the victim,Mrs Eucharia Ezekwena told us that though she has been using kerosene for year but subsequent kerosene explosion in different parts of the town has proven that adulterated product had taken over the good ones which if not quickly intervened by government would bring much harm to users.

Speaking with the victim’s daughters Mrs.Ngozika Nwankwo and Mrs Chika Ibe, they noted that distress call came to their phone of their mother’s incident and they quickly rushed her to a nearby health center where she was given first aid before taken to the hospital.

She hinted that while they glorify God for saving their aged mother from painful experience occasioned by traders who want quick money by selling adulterated kerosene, appeal to appropriate authority to intensify effort in checkmating petroleum products of those in the line of business.

According to her, the adulterated kerosene if proper attention is not given to it by concern authority in the state by ensuring that such product is not sold in the market would pose serious threat to the lives of the innocent public, as its explosion could be compare to that of the premium motor spirit, otherwise known as fuel.

Lending their voices, sympathizers including Mrs. Elizabeth Nwachukwu, and Mrs. Felicia Ewuzie narrated that they have had similar experiences and appealed to government intervention.

The sympathizers, however, called good spirited individuals, Ebonyi State Emergency Management Agency and Office of the Special Assistant to the State Governor on Welfare Matters , headed by Rev.Fr. Abraham Nwali to come to the aid of the girl as they told us that the victim has been using hot water in the place of medication due to financial challenge.

Collaborating the report, Major Prophet Ikechukwu Ogbujie, frowned upon the increase sale of fuel in place of kerosene and charge Ebonyi State government to set set task force to help curb the looming danger.

Meanwhile,our reporter during interaction with some kerosene sellers observed that most of them are ignorant of the said product as they rather go for cheap product without knowledge of their implications.