Khayelitsha fire death toll rises to five

The death toll for a series of shack fires on New Year’s day in Khayelitsha and Thembeni has risen to five, the City of Cape Town disaster management services has said.

The latest victim, 35-year-old Lungelo Krexe, died in hospital where he was being treated for the burns which covered 80% of his body, said spokesman Wilfred Solomons-Johannes of the city’s disaster risk management centre today.

Krexe’s condition had deteriorated since being admitted on January 1.

Solomons-Johannes said Krexe was declared dead by doctors yesterday at 12.55pm.

The four dead were all males, ages 25, 21, 25 and 29.

The shack fires on New Year’s day initially killed four people and left 4 000 homeless in Khayelitsha and Thembeni.

Solomons-Johannes said at 1.12am a fire was reported at Thembeni informal settlement in Du Noon.

“The fire destroyed 15 formal houses and another 220 shacks in the area. As a result of the fire 800 people were left displaced,” he said.

In Khayelitsha, a fire destroyed 120 shacks on Monday at 7.15pm leaving 200 people homeless at the WD-section.

Another devastating fire broke-out at BM-section of Khayelitsha at 4.45am on Tuesday.

The blaze destroyed over 800 shacks leaving more than 3 000 people homeless.

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