A fire has burnt down cotton estimated at close to 100 million shillings at East Acholi Cooperative Union Ginnery.
The fire that reportedly started at around 2pm Sunday afternoon burnt more than 10,000 tons of cotton. Eye witnesses say the fire was sparked off by exhaust pipe of a lorry that had gone to offload cotton. They say the driver left the vehicle on idle for a long time and the exhaust pipe got heated up.
With no fire brigade in place, residents battled hard to put off the fire using water from basins and a cesspool emptier was brought in to put out the fire.
By Sunday evening, residents were still struggling to put off the fire using basins and water buckets. Other people volunteered their vehicles to carry sand and water to put off the fire.
John Onenarach, the manager of Rwenzori Ginneries, a company that manages the Kitgum ginnery says he is helpless. He says they have called for fire briaged from Gulu to rescue the situation.
Cue in: “I was sitting here…”
Cue out: “…what happened”
Kitgum district police commander, Nasur Oringa however blames the management of the ginnery for negligence. Oringa says he had warned the management to take precaution to protect the cotton from fire accidents. He says the management ignored his advice and are now reaping the result.
Cue in: “there is gross negligence…”
Cue out: “…within at the regional level”
By 9pm, the fire brigade unit from Gulu had not yet arrived at the scene of the fire, eight hours after the fire broke out.
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