A woman who allegedly attempted to burn down the Makola Shopping Mall in Accra early yesterday morning has been arrested.
The woman is said to have poured kerosene around sections of the mall but before she could cause any havoc, she was arrested by the private security men at the mall.
Her identity could not be verified as of the time of going to press because she was acting in a very hysterical manner.
As a result of her conduct, the police referred the suspect to the Accra Psychiatric Hospital for mental examination.
According to Mrs Rose-Margaret Kpodo, the Managing Director of MMC Property Management Limited, managers of the mall, around 2 a.m. yesterday the security men, during their routine market inspection, saw the suspect pouring kerosene around sections of the mall.
She said the suspected arsonist violently resisted attempts by the private security men to detain her but she was overpowered and handcuffed before being handed over to the police.
“She was questioned by the private security men but was inconsistent with her answers. She was screaming that she would burn the market and we believe she feigned madness,” Mrs Kpodo said.
At the time of her arrest, the suspect, who was wearing a white night gown and a pair of slippers, had in her possession a bucket, two empty bottles and some clothes.
Mrs Kpodo told the Daily Graphic that last Friday, a tenant at the Agbogbloshie Market had reported to the managers of the mall that he had received a call from an anonymous caller who spoke about an impending fire outbreak at the Agbogbloshie Market. She said the anonymous caller claimed that the fire outbreak was being masterminded by some traders who were unable to repay loans they had contracted from some banks.
Based on the tip-off, Mrs Kpodo said, the mall alerted the police and enhanced all security arrangements at markets such as the Adentan Shopping Centre and the New Makola Number Two Market which are managed by MMC Property Management Limited.
Previous market fires
Last year, the country witnessed market fires at the Kantamanto, Makola Number Two, Madina, Tamale markets, among others. The fierce fires reduced a section of the Kantamanto Market to rubble, while many traders at other affected markets lost their goods.
The devastation caused by the market fires was so alarming that the government sought international assistance to get to the bottom of the matter.
Source: Daily Graphic