Boakai Gives L$10M To Gas Explosion Victims

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President -elect Joseph Nyuma Boakai has visited the incident scene of the tragic gasoline tanker explosion, laid wreath to the memory of the deceased and made a donation of one million Liberian dollars to the Incident Management Team. President -elect Boakai and Mrs. Kartumu Y. Boakai have deposited a wreath on the mass grave containing the remains of victims of the explosion that happened on Boxing Day in Totota, Bong County. A day after Christmas, a petroleum tanker reportedly on its way to Nimba County from Monrovia skid off the road in Totota and subsequently exploded, resulting into mass casualties. Shortly after the disaster, President -elect Boakai promptly issued a statement, empathizing with the victims and calling for a speedy investigation into the disaster to avoid the reoccurrence of such incidents. In the statement, President -elect, Boakai expressed shock and disbelief at the tragic loss of lives in one of the worst disasters in recent times in the country. The incoming Liberian Chief Executive noted that the entire nation is saddened by the accident and has called on the government to speedily investigate the circumstances surrounding the explosion, pointing out that there was a need for massive safety awareness on the transportation, sale and storage of flammable substances, including gasoline. This disaster has brought into question the open sale of gasoline in containers and the careless way these substances are managed by those doing business in the petroleum sector, the President-elect noted, adding that this brings forth the need for Government to ensure that vehicles conveying such hazardous liquids are road worthy. He further called on the Liberia National Fire Service and the Liberia National Police to design public safety measures and awareness programs to educate the citizens on the dangers of gasoline and its explosive nature. “We express our deepest condolences to the bereaved families and the people of   Bong County for the loss sustained and pray that the Almighty will give the families peace,” the President -elect said. Meanwhile, President-elect today donated $10 million Liberian dollars and 200 bags of rice as his a contribution to the Committee overseeing the management of the disaster in Totota. The death toll has risen to sixty-five, health authorities disclosed. At the same time, the Chief Medical Officer of the Republic of Liberia, Dr. Francis Kateh, briefing the President-elect, said there are presently 34 patients at the Phebe, 18 at the J.F. Kennedy, 15 at the ELWA, 9 at the 14th Military and 5 at the Catholic Hospitals, respectively. According to the Incident Management Team, a hundred thousand United States Dollars is needed to address the situation with some of the patients suffering from 3rd degree burns.

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