MEC appoints team to help Joburg fire victims

2014-12-22 23:39
(Picture: Sapa)

(Picture: Sapa)

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Johannesburg - An emergency intervention team had been set up to help victims of a fire in Slovoville, Johannesburg, in which 400 shacks burned down this weekend, the Gauteng MEC for human settlements announced on Monday.

"What we have witnessed is highly traumatic and heartbreaking. We need, therefore, to co-ordinate all activities to make sure that we can assist to rebuild the lives of this community," Jacob Mamabolo said in a statement.

Mamabolo visited the informal settlement on Monday to assess the damage.

He said the department needed to move faster in order to make sure all the affected families were taken care of.

"The severity of the situation was caused by the density and congestion of shacks which made it easier for the fire to spread quickly.

"For that reason we will de-densify and reorganise the living spaces to create access points and create enough spaces between shacks in order to avoid similar cases in future."

The department had bought the land next to the settlement and phase one of building would start early next year.

Mamabolo called on people living in informal settlements to take precautionary measures to avoid fires during the festive season.

Read more on:    johannesburg  |  fires
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