General News of Thursday, 27 September 2018
A teacher at the Wenchi Methodist Senior High School in the Brong Ahafo Region whose spine got injured in last year’s Kintampo Waterfalls disaster has appealed to the government to expedite action on his treatment as promised.
Mr Daniel Alubadek was promised a corrective spine surgery in Germany by the government of Ghana, to enable him to return to the classroom and go about his normal duties.
“Since the incident happened, I’m still on the payroll, so, I’m relying on my pay to feed myself but I’m hoping to regain my strength and go back to my normal life,” he told Class91.3FM’s Blessed Sogah on the Total Recall show on Wednesday, 27 September 2018.
“I don’t go to work, I don’t teach anymore due to the accident because looking at the nature of the injury and the nature of the work, it can’t correlate and I won’t be effective as expected, so, since the incident, I’ve been indoors and I haven’t been able to go to work or any other active place,” he added.
Touching on the government’s promise to assist all the victims, Mr Alubadek said: “Government promised to take care of the issue for me to get better. In February, I had a call from the MCE that the Ministry of Tourism wants to handle the issue, so we have to go and get a medical report and go through some processes so that they would send the report to some doctors in Germany for analysis for them to see the treatment that will best fit [my condition] so that we would go there for the treatment.
“In the course of the months, we’ve gone through that process. We ended the process about two months ago and last month, I called him [MCE] and he asked for some time to go to Accra to meet with the Ministry of Tourism and others for discussions for everything to get on course so that we go over to Germany for the treatment. So, this is the process and this is how far we’ve gone with it.”
In March 2017, dozens of revellers, largely students of the Wenchi Methodist Senior High School were crushed to death when rocks and trees at the Kintampo waterfalls tumbled into the water they were swimming in.
The students had visited the place as part of an excursion to some tourist sites in the country. Many others also sustained various degrees of injuries.
The incident sparked a national discourse on the need to have stringent safety reforms at the waterfalls and other tourist sites across the country.
The government constituted a committee which probed the disaster and made some recommendations including the following:
1. An immediate afforestation exercise to improve the diversity of the flora at the waterfall
2. Review of management structures at the facility since it emerged that loyalists of the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) took over the management facility after the party won elections in 2016.
3. The introduction of a clearly defined public safety management and emergency preparedness and coordination
4. The removal of loose rocks and those in potentially precarious positions at the various stages of the falls
5. The re-engineering of the entrance from the main Techiman-Tamale Highway
A year after the disaster
Management of the Kintampo waterfalls told Class News safety measures have been put in place to forestall a recurrence of the disaster.
One official said offices have been constructed for managers and tour guides at the facility.
In addition to the construction of a new modern toilet facility, the stairs at the cliff used by revellers to get to the waterfalls, have also been expanded to accommodate more people.
There is also an all-day police presence at the facility while a plan to construct a canopy walkway is also on course.