Fatoumata Drammeh, 50, female; Foutmala Drammeh, 21, female; Muhammed Drammeh, 12, male; Nyumaaisha Drammeh, 19, female; Haji Dukary, 49, male; Fatoumata Dukureh, 5, female; Haja Dukureh, 37, female; Mariam Dukureh, 11, female; Mustapha Dukureh, 12, male; Omar Jambang, 6, male; Sera Janneh, 27, female; Haouwa Mahamadou, 5, female; Seydou Toure, 12, male; Fatoumata Tunkara, 43, female; Isatou Jabbie, 31, female; Hagi Jawara, 47, male; Ousmane Konteh, 2, male. 17 lives taken in a horrific apartment fire in the Bronx last Sunday. The ruling class and their officials would have you believe that these working class African people, many of whom were from the Gambia, died because of a tragic accident, the fault of a fellow tenant. There is much talk of malfunctioning space heaters and negligence on the tenants’ part, but we all know this is a lie to save the skin of the owners. Let’s talk about some real facts as reported from tenants who spoke with ruling class outlets and investigators regarding the mass murder.
There was no intercom system, faulty or non-operating smoke detectors, failure to provide adequate heat, which necessitated the use of space heaters, and faulty doors which remained open despite being billed as self-closing. The fact that doors remained open allowed toxic smoke to spread throughout the building, asphyxiating and killing 17 people. The fire-alarm system in the building was also faulty, which caused many tenants to disregard it. So, we see conditions that are already prepared for a fire causing immense loss of life. If this was a building occupied by “middle class” or higher class people, particularly Euro-Americans, these conditions would not be allowed to continue and the building would not have been allowed to hold residents. But, since these were working class African immigrants, these conditions were allowed to remain, and this building was allowed to be occupied. Instead of closing this death trap and providing alternate, safe housing for all residents, the bourgeois emergency management authorities are allowing people to return to top floor units, only one week after their fellow tenants suffocated a few floors below! This building was a problem for many years, with tenants submitting several complaints and reports about the conditions and several violations issued from bourgeois housing authorities? How soon before another incident caused by ruling class negligence takes even more lives? Whatever happens to workers or tenants everywhere, the ruling class is always at fault, and the bought and paid for government is not a friend or ally.
This truth is shown by the fact that Pig Mayor of NYC, Eric Adams, sought to play tenants for fools and offer simple fire safety advice and take photo ops handing out sweets to displaced tenants at a mosque, instead of serving them for real and ensuring the building and all others are brought up to code so that these mass murder incidents do not reoccur in the future. Adams’ position makes sense, as his position is beholden to landlords such as Rick Gropper, who co-founded the Camber Group. The Camber Group is one of the entities that co-owns the death trap and owns hundreds of millions of dollars worth of “affordable” real estate in the New York City area, coming to a total of fifty-eight hundred units. Camber was responsible for the day-to-day operations of the building. It should be noted that Gropper also served on Adams’ transition team as a “housing advisor”! Gropper was frequently seen at Adams’ fundraisers and donated a substantial sum to his campaign, and in exchange, Adams approved one of Gropper’s development projects. Corruption and bribery/lobbying is how business is done in American politics, and as we have seen, workers and tenants pay the price in their blood.
The Adams and Groppers of the world will continue to gamble and make deals over the blood of the people until militant organizations arise to challenge them on the field of power. Power is the only thing that can cease these atrocities. Lawsuits and complaints to institutions owned lock, stock and barrel by the enemy class will sit for years only to be dismissed. Appealing to bought and paid for shills like Eric Adams will not work either. Only through organization can the power of the dispossessed and poor be felt, and only through organization can people’s justice be secured for the 17 victims of the Bronx fire.