Early in the morning on November 7, 2012 disaster struck the Achimota neighborhood of Ghana's capital city Accra. Out of nowhere, a six-storey building housing a branch of the Melcom Shopping Mall collapsed on itself, with 86 workers inside preparing to open the store for business. There was no earthquake, no bomb, no outside force except faulty workmanship that had been deteriorating for several years.
Even in the modern metropolis that is Accra, The Ghanaian government had extreme difficulty finding the resources to react to this sort of disaster. Although the relief efforts began slow, within two days 84 bodies were recovered; 68 alive and 18 dead.
This occurrence of this disaster in one of Accra's modernized, industrial areas makes us wonder if we are developing too fast? What are the real costs of expedited development and how long can it last? And of course, the ever-present issue of corruption lingered. Obviously, several government officials approved this building without the proper building codes. How far can corruption take us when it is literally making the city fall apart.
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Marisa Schwartz, Kevin Taylor, Loud Silence Media
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