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I am a political scientist by training but at heart I am a change maker with an insatiable drive to correct the injustices that plague Nigeria.
 
 

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Common sense applies even in the house of God


I would again like to offer my condolences to the families that were affected by the horrible tragedy at The Catholic Holy Ghost Adoration Ground vigil night at Uke Town in Idemili North Anambra State Nigeria. As more and more details regarding the events are coming to light and after thorough legal consultation we figured that those who lost their life and their families, during the stampede at the Catholic Holy Ghost Adoration vigil night Uke are on their own. I am left with a desire to reach out so as to prevent this kind of incident from happening again. I would first like to issue a warning letting you know that you may not like what I have to say or perhaps may even be offended. At the risk of upsetting some, I feel it is necessary for me to share these insights.

Why is it necessary to attend these types of large scale church events as witness in the Holy Ghost Adoration vigil night or RCCG camp ground in Lagos Nigeria? It seems to me that these types of church events are simply asking for trouble. I was told that when leaving the RCCG camp/Holy Ghost Adoration ground event of this magnitude it can take upwards of three hours to be able to exit the event. This in and of itself tells me that there are serious safety concerns. While this exit time under normal circumstances is most likely an inconvenience, what if this was an emergency? How do we go about evacuating this number of people in a safe manner?

When events of this nature (hosting thousands of people) in the US there are a whole series of events that take place. These events have to be permitted. The permit process ensures a certain number of exits, appropriate security and law enforcement, governs the liquor distribution, oversees the parking situation, requires medical personnel on-sight, requires a certain number of restroom facilities, and so on.

As savvy consumers it is essential to know what you are getting into. Research the event ahead of time. Look to make sure that the event is legit. Ensure that there are appropriate safety measures being followed. Call the organization that is sponsoring the event ahead of time and pose these important questions to them.

My hope by writing this piece is to ensure these types of tragedies do not occur again. It is essential that we demand safety from those putting on the events. The Catholic Holy Ghost Adoration Ground tragedy that occurred is a clear example of how an event can go from a peaceful gathering to a horrific deadly situation in a manner of moments.

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