Fire ravages shacks built under pylons

2017-09-28 06:00
Police and residents look on in the aftermath of a fire that burned shacks in Baghdad informal settlement.                                                                                PHOTO: Mandla MAhashe

Police and residents look on in the aftermath of a fire that burned shacks in Baghdad informal settlement. PHOTO: Mandla MAhashe

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Nine families from Baghdad informal settlement in Philippi were left homeless on Friday after a fire ate their shacks.

The inferno raged around 9am, with some residents lucky enough to remove their belongings.

Others were not so lucky.

Witnesses on the scene said they suspected that an electrical fault was the reason behind the fire, Ward 34 Councillor Fikizwa Nkunzana said she did not have that information.

The settlement is built under electricity pylons, and Nkunzana said not enough was being done to move residents to a safer area.

“The fire burnt nine shacks to the ground. The City is not working fast enough to provide proper housing for these residents.

Not long ago, a young child was electrocuted in this area, it really is a dangerous place to live,” she said.

Nkunzana said she rushed to the affected area as soon as she received the news of the fire.

“The residents have been given immediate relief with the City’s disaster management and housing department availing resources for them to rebuild,” she said.

Alungile Meji, 19, said that when she was alerted to the fire, it was too late.

“When I arrived the house was already engulfed in flames. I have lost everything that I own that was in that house,” she said.

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