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Friday, 27 January 2017

BETHEL ECG DEC 25TH SERVICE



WALKING IN GOD’S PRESENCE: a call to accountability
By: Timothy Ngnenbe
The one-storey church building, though still at the roofing stage, was packed to the rafters. It was a spirit-filled and charged atmosphere as the congregation defied the inconveniences posed by the uncompleted building and sang, hoisted white handkerchiefs, and danced to the glory of God.
The atmosphere got more electrified when the singing and praises team gave the tune to the song “Glory be to God in the highest heaven,” the song believed to have been sang by angels when news broke about the birth of Jesus, in Bethlehem.
The members of the flock, most of whom were clad in all-white attire, hugged and shared pleasantries in absolute expressing of the joy of the festive season.
The above picture was the scene that greeted me at the Old Fadama branch of the Evangelical Church of Ghana (ECG), in Accra, last Sunday, December 25, 2016.
Christmas day
Even though it was a Sunday, the day also coincided with Christmas, a Christian religious festival celebrated to mark the birth of Jesus, the rock on which the Christian faith is anchored.
The bible, in Luke 2:1-20, gives a vivid account about the divine and humbling birth of Jesus Christ, the visit of the three wise men and the gifts that were presented to Him.
Secularized as this all-important festival has become over the centuries, the religious essence of it has been guarded jealously by various Christian denominations.
The festival is used by many Christians as an opportunity to rejuvenate their spiritual being, by asking for forgiveness of their sins. The period of the celebration, which extends beyond December 25, is also used to reach out to the poor and needy and to exchange gifts.
Messages that dominate the pulpits on such an occasion are those of joy, redemption, forgiveness, hope, purity and humility.
Apt theme
For Bethel E.C.G at Old Fadama, where I joined in the church service held to mark the day, the feeling was great as the Head Pastor of that Church, Reverend Maxwell K.K. Liwangol, led the way to deliver the sermon that will walk the flock into the new year.
The astute preacher that he is, Rev. Liwangol blended humour with in-depth knowledge of the bible to reel the congregation into the sermon, as they listened with rapt attention and burst into spontaneous cheers as and when he introduced a joke to spice the delivery.
Speaking on the theme “Walking in God’s Presence: Ability versus Character,” he observed that God had deposited in every human being the ability and potential to do something and that it required a positive character to be able to explore that ability to the fullest.
Sermon
The sermon, hinged on Mathew 25:14-30, was so engulfing that one could hear a pin fall from the silence with with which it was received by the congregation.
It was centred on the three servants, each to whom their master entrusted some talents (money) to manage while he was away on a far-away journey.
“He gave to each one according to his ability; to one, he gave five thousand gold coins, to another he gave two thousand, and to another he gave one thousand. Then, he left on his journey,” (Mathew 25:15).
It is written that upon the return of the master from the journey, the servants to whom five and two thousand gold coins were given had traded with the money and made five thousand and two thousand more, representing 100 per cent of the start-up capital.
The master commended them for the good work done and asked for God’s blessings for them for giving accurate account of their stewardship.
Insubordination
For the third servant, however, the story was different. When asked about what he had done with what was given him, he replied “Sir, I know you are a hard man; you reap harvests where you did not sow; and you gather crops where you did not scatter seeds. I was afraid, so I went off and hide your money in the ground. Look! Here is what belongs to you.”
To this servant, the master did not only rebuke and chastise him for his insolence, laziness, and redundancy; he also ordered what he had to be taken from him and given to those who had made more gains from what was entrusted into their care.
National development
Taking a cue from the events as they have unfolded in the scriptures, Rev. Liwangol explained that those three servants could be likened to the people in leadership positions at all levels, who in one way or the other, have oversight responsibility of public resources.
“You see, the problem with us as a country is how effectively and efficiently we are able to manage the resources put in our care, no matter how small they are. People who lead need to be accountable to the public at all levels in terms of how financial resources entrusted into their care are expended.
“It is when we eschew arrogance, ingratitude, pilfering, and welcome diligence, proper accountability, and trustworthiness, that we can build a strong and united country,” he stressed.
The key questions
As I sat and listened carefully and pondered over the sermon, streams of thoughts kept flowing through my mind. So, I ask, “what if Jesus had underrated his low profiled birth; first, as the son of a carpenter, and second as haven’t been born and kept in a manger? What if Jesus had abused the supernatural power he had while on earth?
In a prophetic declaration, the “Man of God” seems to have provided an excellent answer to these mind-boggling questions when he stated “it is not how much we have that matters, but what we do with what we have. The year 2017 will be a year of renewed births, a year of great exploits. But, as people in whom God has deposited so much potential and ability, we need to explore with the little we have, in order to expand our territories.
“If we will not let our humble background negatively affect the full realization of our potential, we will continue to expand in leaps and bounds.”
As we walk into the new year in a few days, let us not be like that third servant who kept his capital in the ground, thereby making it redundant. Do not, by your actions or inaction, put the resources of the country into the ground. As did that ungrateful servant. For, a country is like a boat; when it sinks, it spares no life.

Writer’s email: ngnentimothy@gmail.com


JUNE 3 FLOOD VICTIM




Timothy Ngnenbe, ACCRA
It was a sad and breaking moment as 35-year old Alex Mensah, a victim of the June 3, 2015 twin disaster that claimed some 159 lives, recounted the painful ordeal he went through that fateful day.
The father of three and resident of Pokuase in the Central Region, who before the fatal incident was a driver, has been disfigured as a result of the burns, aside losing his source of livelihood.
 Narrative
Speaking to the Daily Graphic yesterday, he disclosed that he was the sole survivor of a 27-member team that sought refuge at the fuel station at the Kwame Nkrumah Circle where the gas explosion started.
“I do not know where to start from and where to end. I am a driver. I was on my daily routine when the floodgate opened. I joined some other people at the fuel station with the hope that I will be safer there.
“At a point, we realised that the whole place had been engulfed with flood water, so we tried to force our way out. We held on to one another so that we will not be carried away by the flood water. But, suddenly, I heard an explosive sound. We began to burn because the water was covered with petrol.
“In fact, I thought the judgement day had come, because the rate at which everyone was crying and shouting for help was more of hell fire,” he said.
To cut a long story short, Mr, Mensah, described his survival as the greatest miracle ever.
Abandoned
After going through the agony and depression at the 37 Military Hospital for six and a half months, he had to go through another period of psychological and mental trauma as his close associates abandoned him.
“Initially, I felt like taking my away my own life. All my friends abandoned me. My children were even afraid to come near me.  It was a traumatic moment.
“When I was discharged from hospital, I was told to go for dressing of the wounds twice in a week. But, each time I boarded public transport, nobody wanted to sit close to me. I do not want my enemy to go through this situation, let alone my loved ones,” he said.
More challenges
According to Mr Mensah, life became so difficult for him when his wife, who fended for the family since the tragic event, also had her shop demolished to pave way for the construction work on the Kwame Nkrumah interchange project.
He said it took the benevolence of his church, Bethel Grace, at Kwabenya, and the support of Mr Samuel Agyemang of Metro Television, to get his three children back to school.
Special appeal
Mr Mensah made a passionate to individuals and organisations to come to help him to pay the debts that hanged around his neck as a result of the disaster.
The Accra Metropolitan Assembly (AMA) yesterday presented GH₵ 10,000 to surviving victims and the families of the deceased to help them get back to their feet.
A visibly happy Mr Mensah expressed his gratitude to the AMA and the government for the support, saying “it will help me to defray some of my debts.”
“I am willing and ready to work within my limit to earn a living for myself and my family. I appeal to any employer, who will not despise me in my trying moment, to help me out. I can still drive. Any vehicle owner who will listen to my plea and help me out will be blessed,” he said.
Mr. Mensah, who kept making reference to the bible and exalting God for saving him, was full of praise to his wife for her support.
“My wife deserves tonnes of commendation. She loved me when I was the breadwinner, and continues to even love me more in my state of dependence. I thank her for being my source of joy.
Background:
Hours of rainfall on June 3, 2015, caused most of the flood-prone areas of Accra to be engulfed in flood water. The Kwame Nkrumah Circle area was the worst affected as an explosion at a fuel station compounded the situation, leading to the death of more than 159 people.
Since the tragic event, some individuals and organisations have launched fundraising events to support the survivors and families of victims.
Today (Friday) marks the first anniversary of the sad event.
QUICK READ:
As the country marks the first anniversary of the June 3, 2015 twin disaster that claimed some 159 lives today (Friday), Mr. Alex Mensah, a victim of the disaster narrated his painful ordeal and appealed for support from the public.





OPEN DEFECATION



 IS “FREE RANGING” IS IT REALLY FREE? : NKWANTA-NORTH IN PERSPECTIVE.
Timothy Ngnenbe
Open defecation is one of the major sanitation challenges that the country is grappling with. Currently, it is estimated that almost a quarter of the country’s population do not use any latrine facility.
 Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDAs) have a hell of time surmounting this daunting hurdle, even though a chunk of resources are sunk in to it.
Ghana is ranked the second most endemic country with an estimated
 5.7 million of its people engaged in open defecation in Africa, only a step above Sudan in first position.
The Nkwanta-North District in the Volta Region has its fair share of the sanitation challenge that relates to open defecation.
Growing up in this part of the country, I remember how as children, we took delight in doing our own thing our own way. We referred to it as “free ranging”, perhaps, burrowing the concept in animal husbandry where the animals are allowed to move about freely with little or no supervision from their keeper.
Little did I know that “free ranging” was a slow but sure way of digging one’s own grave and that of the community. So, is the issue of open defecation still prevalent in the Nkwanta-North district?  What step is the district assembly doing to curb the situation?
Carved out of the Nkwanta district and inaugurated in September 2004, the Nkwanta-North district has its capital located at Kpassa. The young district has gone through thick and thin to manage the numerous challenges bedeviling it.
Standing tall on the list of daunting challenges in the district is the issue of open defecation. Most of the towns and villages do not have public places of convenience, let alone the individual households.
So, the old and the young, males and females, attend to the call of nature in nearby bushes and refuse dumps nearer to the house.
In a few of the towns where some public facilities for that purpose exist, people still fail to use them. Sometimes, it is interesting to see a pile of refuse dump emerging and virtually engulfing the vicinities of public toilets, such that people prefer to squat behind it rather than use the toilet.
Why will people not use public toilets?
Some of the people I spoke to said it was better to go “free ranging” because anytime they use the public places of convenience, they could barely breath since the place is not properly maintained.
A 27-year old mechanic, who gave his name as “Labista,” said “if I am at my shop and feel freeing myself, do you expect me to go to these smelling things called toilets? The smell by the time I return to work will be enough to sack my apprentices. I don’t want to lose them”  
Some of the people also told me that they decided not to use the public toilets because the administrators of the facilities are misusing the money. To them, the best way to register their displeasure was to boycott its patronage and go to the bushes, where no one will ask for any fee.
Is “free ranging” really free?
There is a saying that if you construct a wooden bridge, it never breaks until you have crossed it yourself. Open defecation, according to health experts, is the major cause of diarrhea, which results in a lot of deaths.
Anytime it rains, the residues of the human excreta littered close to water bodies get washed into natural sources of water such as rivers, streams, polluting it in the process. Eventually, the same people, who are heavily dependent on those sources due to lack of potable water, go to fetch it for domestic use.
This situation puts them at risk of water-borne diseases such as bilharzia, dysentery, and many others. Even more, when human waste is left in the open, flies go to perch on it and go back to settle on uncovered food in the homes, leading to outbreak of diarrhea.
At the end of the day, families spend their meager income to treat these water-borne diseases in the limited health facilities in the district.
Sources at the three health centers in the district show that
Measures to curb open defecation
The task of ensuring improved sanitation rests on local authorities. How is the Nkwanta-North district assembly lacing its boots to address the situation?
The District Chief Executive (DCE) for the district, Mr Martin Kudor Kidibi, in an interview, said the assembly was in talks with Zoomlion Ghana to take over the management of the public places of convenience, a move that will ensure that will ensure proper management of the facilities.
“The assembly will also formulate bye-laws to regulate open defecation. The bye-law will make it a punishable act to deter people from it. To make it effective, we shall recruit Community Guards to do routine checks so that offenders can be tracked and dealt with,” he said.
The DCE added that all schools in the district have Health and Sanitation Officers who deal with sanitation issues and so, the district will work with them to improve the toilet facilities in schools to discourage the children from resorting to free range.
Traditional authorities, Assembly Members, Area Councils and Unit Committees, need to be encourage and motivated to monitor the and apply sanctions in their communities. 
The MMDAs and other building regulatory bodies should strictly enforce laws that will compel all households to get toilet facilities, especially, new buildings that will spring up.
Even as national policies to curb open defecation are unrolled, the onus lies on all and sundry to join the fight, for, a nation is like a boat; when it is hit by a storm, it sinks with all the people in it.
 Writer’s email: ngnenbetimothy@gmail.com







SIXTH PARLIAMENT REPORT

19 MPs failed to make statements in Sixth Parliament - Report
 

By: Timothy Ngnenbe, ACCRA
NINETEEN Members of Parliament (MPs) in the Sixth Parliament of the Fourth Republic did not make any contribution or statement on the floor of the House throughout the tenure of office, a 2016 report on the performance of the legislators has revealed.
The study, which was carried out by Odekro, a STAR-Ghana sponsored initiative, further showed that 12 of those MPs lost their seats in the 2016 polls.
According to the report, which was launched in Accra yesterday, only 52 of the 275-member legislature, representing 18.9 per cent of the house, contributed to the amendment of 81 bills that were approved by the house within the period.
The reports further stated that the New Patriotic Party (NPP) MPs made an average of 199 statements over the four years, as against 166 of the National Democratic Congress (NDC).

MPs’ Performance
Touching on the overall performance of MPs, the document revealed that 255 of the 275 MPs made at least one contribution to debates on the floor of the house during the four-year tenure.
 It further stated that 73 MPs absented themselves without permission, an action said to be in clear violation of Article 97 (1) of the constitution.
Throwing more light on the report, the Content Manager of Odekro, Mr Lolan Sagoe-Moses, explained that data for the report was collected from the website of Parliament House and the Parliamentary Services.

Methodology
He said the methodology for the assessment of Parliament was hinged on the key functions of MPs, including executive oversight, representative and law-making functions.
“For the MPs, we also took into consideration their attendance to the House, contributions to statements and debates on the floor of Parliament, as well as the engagement with local constituents,” he said.

Engagements
Mr Sagoe-Moses explained that one of the key findings of the report also included the low engagement of the legislature with civil society organisations (CSOs) on sector-specific issues.
According to him, it was observed during the study that out of about 1,500 meetings held by 21 committees, CSOs were involved in only 55 of them, representing 3.7 of the total number.
He said the way forward was for Parliament to create a mechanism to engage CSOs on key technical issues that were sector-specific, adding that it was through such engagements that the public would benefit from the work of the House.
“The fact is that when CSOs are properly engaged by Parliament, it will facilitate the approval of certain bills, especially, those that are sensitive and of great public concern,” he said.

Recommendations
Mr Sagoe-Moses said it was important for Parliament to review its standing orders to make room for more MPs to have the opportunity to make contributions on the floor of the House.
“We realised that MPs who had positions tend to have the opportunity to speak more than those who did not, because of the order of precedent contained in the standing order,” he said.
The report further recommended that the constitutional provision that mandated the President to appoint 60 per cent of ministers from Parliament ought to be reviewed. This is because, MPs who doubled as ministers recorded low attendance in the House.
He further urged the current Parliament to make use of modern technology to facilitate communication within the House and with the public.

Training
For his part, the Chairman of the Steering Committee of STAR-Ghana, Professor Akilapa Sawyer, stressed the need for MPs to be empowered to live up to expectation.
The Director of Monitoring and Evaluation and Special Projects at Odekro, Mr Kinna Likimani, said one of the low points of the Sixth Parliament of the fourth republic was the failure to pass the Right to Information (RTI) Bill.
“For Parliament to be truly representative, people ought to have access to information on the operation of the House and the legislative procedure,” he said.

Fact sheet
The best performing MP was Dr Anthony Akoto Osei, MP for Old Tafo, while the worst MP was Mr Paul Evans Aidoo, MP for Sefwi Wiawso.
The composition of the Sixth Parliament was as follows: NDC: 147, NPP:123, CPP:1, PNC:1, Independent: 2.
The 30 female MPs in Parliament made an average of 48 statements while their male counterparts made an average of 195.


BOOK REVIEW

Title: Eve: If I Had Known
Author: Lady Pastor Nora Osei-Bonsu
Publisher: Preachers House 2016
Number of pages: 123
Reviewed by: Timothy Ngnenbe

How will you feel if you had Eve, the first woman ever to be created by God, tell you her experience in the garden of Eden? What if you had the opportunity to listen to her tell the world the circumstances behind the ordeal she went through?
Well, the secret weapon to your search for answers to these questions is contained in the book "Eve: If I Had Known."
The book tells the story of Eve, from the time she was created out of the rib of Adam, her family life, encounter with the serpent in the Garden of Eden, to the punishment visited on the first family by God.
Beginning her story on a reflective note, Eve is heard in a remorseful mood saying "looking back, I still cannot believe that I traded all the other trees for only the one forbidden. What could have happened?" 
Writing style
The writer employed the use of literary devices to convey the message of Eve, in a relaxed and conversational style such that the attention of the reader is maintained and sustained throughout.  The use of monologue makes the events in the book appear so real.
In the book, Eve, the Protagonist, is heard telling her story; perhaps, to clear all doubts from the minds of the people of the world, and to bring to the fore, the need to learn useful lessons.
An outstanding feature of this book is the use of flashback, biblical allusions, metaphors, and personification, as exemplified by the phrase "deception came knocking  at my door, and I gladly opened and welcomed it in."
Eve warns the people of the world to be wary of the diabolic plan of the devil and seek refuge in God, as exemplified in "You have amazing power in Jesus Christ so try and utilise it to  the best effect."
Eve makes a comparison between the opportunities given to her and Jesus and how they used it differently.
"My life story is definitely intertwined with His; I started the race and performed very poorly but when He willingly took up the mantle of performance, He performed incredibly well - winning the race. He is a life saver, a transformer, a reliever, a redeemer."
The lessons
From chapters one to five, Eve narrates how God, out of his abundant love for man (Adam), created her to provide companionship, support, and to serve as a life partner. Here, the love and family life of Adam and Eve  is told. Their intimate and cordial relationship with God is also brought to the fore.
Out of the love God had for the first family, he gave them laws that will help them to relate with him and take control over all other things created by him. Key to the laws given by God as a guide to the first family was the order not to eat of the fruit of the tree of knowledge and of death (located in the middle of the garden).
The fall of man
From chapter six to nine, the theme of deception and disobedience is unveiled as Eve narrates how she encountered the serpent. As part of the deceptive strategy,  the serpent succeeded in convincing Eve to disobey God through sweet but evil whispers.
Eve is made to believe that eating the fruits of the forbidden tree will put her on the same level with God and give her  more knowledge.  She took a unilateral decision to eat of the fruits of the forbidden tree and later convinced her husband to do same. At that point, the cordial relationship between the Creator and the first family turned sour as they began to hide from the presence of God. The blame game set in as Adam, Eve and the serpent received their portion of blame for the fall of man and the punishment thereafter.
The tree of life
In the last six chapters (13 to 19), Eve called on humanity to seek the presence of God in order to enjoy his mercies.  She observed that it was important for all men who fall to rise up and seek salvation accepting Jesus as their Lord and personal saviour.
Eve describes Jesus as the tree of life that produces the fruit of salvation.  Here, Jesus is offered as the best choice for humanity. The writer outlines practical steps for all who seek God's salvation
Among the moral lessons Eve conveyed to the current and future generations is for them to be obedient, patient, mindful of the choices they make, attentive to God's voice, and to seek God in earnest.
The sentiments
The worry of the writer is not in the hardship Eve brought to the rest of humanity by her decision, bad choices, selfishness among others.  Rather, the writer is worried that people of the world still do the very things they accuse Eve of, wondering if they have the moral right to do so.
"Eve was deceived by the serpent.  Today, we are still being deceived. We disobey and live our lives full of scars while leaving negative marks for generations unborn to grapple with," she stated.
The writer warns that there will be accountability before the creator one day, stressing that it takes virtues such as patience, self-control, consultation, diligence, and obedience to meet the acceptable standard.
My opinion
The book, even though anchored on biblical principles, is a must-read for all, irrespective of the religious background.  If all of us will reflect on our lives as did Eve in this book, we would realise that our choices, selfishness, disobedience, have suffocated the country, denying it the oxygen required for sustainable national development.
Will the future generations not point accusing fingers at our negative actions today as we are doing to Eve? Let us apply the principles in this book that requires us to be careful about the voices we listen to and also being accountable of our stewardship.
By now, you know what to do - grab a copy of "Eve: If I Had Known"  and make it your life guide.

LPG PLANTS

GAS PLANTS IN RESIDENTIAL AREAS – who will bell the cat?.
By: Timothy Ngnenbe
Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) is increasingly becoming the preferred choice of fuel in the country and the world at large due to its affordability, efficiency and environmental friendliness.
However, the establishments of LPG refill plants and fuel stations in residential areas, in flagrant violation of the guidelines for the siting and operation of such facilities has, however, become a nagging human security challenge for the public
Over the years, explosions at LPG facilities have caused many deaths and resulted in various degrees of injury to others, while destroying properties running into millions of Ghana cedis.
The most recent incident of gas explosion was the one that occurred on December 22, 2016 at Domazu Gas Limited, a gas refill plant located at La, opposite the International Trade Fair Centre in the Dade Kotopon municipality in the Greater Accra Region.
The incident claimed more than nine lives with 12 others sustaining various degrees of injury.
 Requirements
By the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) standard, it is an offence under Regulation 1(1) and 29 of the Environmental Assessment Regulation 1999 (L.I. 1652) to operate an LPG and fuel stations without permit from EPA.
The National Petroleum Authority’s regulations also stipulate that LPG plants should be sited at a minimum of 30.8 meters or 100 feet from residential areas.
The guidelines for installation and operation of LPG refill plants clearly mandates regulatory agencies such as the EPA, the NPA, the Ghana Atomic Energy Commission (GAEC), the Town and Country Planning Department (TCPD) and the metropolitan, municipal and district assemblies (MMDAs) have the mandate to approve the building of fuel and LPG plants. Other key players are the Ghana National Fire Service (GNFS), the Ghana Standards Authority (GSA) and the Factories Inspectorate Department (FID).
While the TCPD is required to superintend over the zoning and rezoning approvals for the siting of LPG plants, MMDAs are required to issue development or building permits, with the EPA also empowered to issue environmental permit.
The odds
Despite the bureaucratic procedure,??? one has to certification and licensing regime,???? LPG plants are still operating at residential areas. On the Circle-Achimota road alone, three LPG stations are located within communities and near fitting shops, houses and chop bars.
At the East Legon area, students of the University of Professional Studies last Thursday, January 19, bared their teeth against the operation of a fuel station that is located very close to the school premises.
The said facility, known as Strategic Energy Limited (SEL) is located five meters away from a mosque, and some seven meters away from a 3000-seater auditorium under construction. Also, the fuel station is just 10 meters away from the lecture complex of UPSA, which accommodates some 10,000 students on a daily basis.
The ugly statistics
A Daily Graphic compilation on the statistics of reported gas-related fatalities between 2007 and 2014 showed that 39 people died, while 186 people sustained various degrees of injury in the 11 reported accidents involving LPG tankers and LPG fuelling stations and domestic calamities.Out of the 11 accidents, five involved industrial settings, including gas stations, fuel stations and a fuel dump. There were three gas tanker crashes with the remaining three being domestic accidents.
Who is to blame?
While many have blamed the proliferation of these LPG plants in residential areas on failure on the part of the regulatory bodies to enforce the guidelines, others hold the view that some of the LPG plants are owned by “powerful” people, who have the muscle to bend the rules.
The explosions have also been linked to the failure of the operators of LPG plants to adhere strictly to operational regulations, especially putting in place fire safety measures.
A case in point is the closure of two LPG plants by the GNFS at Amasaman in the Ga South Municipality of the Greater Accra Region in December last year.
One of the facilities, which had been newly constructed, had leakages due to cracks at the joints of the dispensary cylinder, given indication that care had not been taken in siting it. The other plant, known as Acheam4 LPG, had sub-standard equipment, including worn out dispensary tube, bad flooring of the base of the point of delivery and inadequate fire-fighting equipment.
Lack of knowledge on safety precautions on the part of the public on handling LPG products, especially at the point of dispensary, has also accounted for the explosions. The Director of Fire Safety at the GNFS DCFO William Yawson, buttressed the above point when he spoke at a forum organised by the GNFS for operators in the LPG industry recently.
“LPG is heavier than air and has the capacity to displace it. When there is a leakage at an LPG plant, the gas is able to travel for more than two kilometers away to source for fire back to the source of the leakage.  It is lighter than water, with the propensity to float and escalate fire outbreaks after coming into contact with water,” he said.
But most operators use water to fight fire at its initial stages at LPG plants, a practice that the DCFO Yawson, said fuels the spread of the fire.
Safety measures
Records at the GNFS shows that nine LPG gas plants believed to be operating in residential areas under conditions that posed threats to the public safety were closed down in 2016.Out of the number, six have been authorised to resume operation after they met the required standard.
Between 2011 and 2013, the EPA also closed down 12 LPG plants in the Greater Accra and Ashanti regions, but the LPG sector has still not come out of the woods.
It is in this regard that the initiative by the GNFS to sensitise key stakeholders in the LPG sector, including Oil Marketing Companies (OMC), must be commended.
The simple rules to avoiding gas explosions at LPG plants, according to the DCFO Yawson, is for car engines to be switched off before filling and loosening the regulator on the gas cylinder when it is at rest.
Offloading Gas tankers immediately upon arrival at LPG plants without waiting for the required 12 hours to discharge has also been frowned on by the GNFS.
Conclusion
It is often said that there is the need to scare away the wolf before you advise the sheep. So, at the individual, domestic and industrial level, let us adhere to strict safety precautions before we demand accountability form duty bearers.


Number crunch :Records at the GNFS shows that nine LPG gas plants believed to be operating in residential areas under conditions that posed threats to the public safety were closed down in 2016.