School office gutted in blaze

2017-07-06 13:45
School Governing Body chairperson Ncamsile Mbatha (front) and a parent, Zonke Radebe (back), with her son Siphesihle Radebe, who is a Grade 12 pupil at the school, picking up the pieces after the suspected arson blaze ravaged Mtholangqondo Secondary School administration block yesterday morning, leaving the principal’s office completely gutted. INSET: The charred remains of the school clerk’s office.

School Governing Body chairperson Ncamsile Mbatha (front) and a parent, Zonke Radebe (back), with her son Siphesihle Radebe, who is a Grade 12 pupil at the school, picking up the pieces after the suspected arson blaze ravaged Mtholangqondo Secondary School administration block yesterday morning, leaving the principal’s office completely gutted. INSET: The charred remains of the school clerk’s office. (Thabang Mathebula)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Crucial documents belonging to the Mtholangqondo Secondary School in the Vulindlela area were destroyed when the school’s administration block caught fire on Wednesday morning.

The school principal’s office, where most of the school’s important records and documents had been stored, was completely gutted, with the office of the school clerk only suffering minimal damage.

It was not clear on Wednesday how much damage the blaze caused. A staff member at the school, who asked not to be named, said everything stored in the principal’s office had been lost and further inspection would determine the extent of the damage.

A neighbour noticed the fire just before 6 am and informed the principal and other members of the School Governing Body (SGB). Residents living in the vicinity used sand and buckets of water in an attempt to douse the blaze.

The school suspended Wednesday’s winter school lessons but these are expected to resume On Thursday.

The school’s SGB chairperson Ncamsile Mbatha said the lack of a proper school fence remains a serious concern.

She called on the Department of Education to speed up the process to provide fencing at the school premises and to maximise security measures as the school has suffered several burglaries recently when schools are closed and during weekends. “They break in and steal computers and other office machinery or just destroy everything and leave it in a chaotic state,” Mbatha.

Mbatha said she believes that someone had tried break into the offices but failed and decided to set the school alight. “Safety here has been a serious concern for a long time and the department is not doing enough to help us, despite our many attempts to apply for the school to be fenced.”

While the cause of the fire remains subject to investigation, members of the community are not ruling out the possibility of sabotage.

Msunduzi fireman David Chilliba said the preliminary investigation indicated that the fire was deliberate but there was no substantial evidence to support it.

“We suspected arson and called in local police to make further investigations into the matter. There was no indication that it could have been an electrical fault. When we arrived some members of the community had already managed to contain the spread of the fire, ” said Chilliba.


Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Inside News24

 
Partner Content
How data is changing investments

Technological disruption is rife in many spheres of business and given the quantity of data available, it’s no surprise that the way in which asset managers work is also changing fast.

Behind the sparkle

Alluring, beautiful and timeless - diamonds are some of the most sought after gems in the world and are a true testament of everlasting brilliance. Let us take you behind the sparkle to show you the history behind this coveted jewel.

/News
 

How to get rid of fleas

Before you call in the pricey exterminators, try this DIY approach that promises to get your flea problem under control.

 
 

Paws

12 Cool cat facts
Chocolate can be fatal for dogs
Spider-man star's adorable relationship with his dog
Do you know what you are feeding your dog?
Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.