THE CITY of Joburg learnt with sadness of the passing of nine people after a fire broke out at one of our buildings in Kaserne, near Kwa Mai-Mai in Central Joburg.
“Upon inspection by Emergency Management Services and our Forensic teams, we sadly confirm that eight adults and an infant succumbed to injuries after the five-story building – which has several Informal Settlements within the building – started burning in the early hours of Wednesday morning,” read a media statement.
Six out of the nine people that died, were burnt beyond recognition.
103 households made up of 135 individuals were affected. The 11 individuals that sustained injuries were taken to Charlotte Maxeke and Baragwanath Hospitals respectively, to seek medical attention.
The Executive Mayor of the City of Joburg, Geoffrey Makhubo and MMC for Housing Mlungisi Mabaso, CEO of Johannesburg Social Housing Company Victor Rambau and other stakeholders, visited the area yesterday to inspect the extent of the damage.
Following the walkabout, officials were instructed to coordinate temporary relief efforts to assist residents of the informal settlement who are being moved to a nearby soccer field where tents have been erected with basic services supplied.
Service Providers have been appointed to do the reblocking and relocate the informal settlement to a nearby identified land. The taxi holding situated within the area, will also be relocated to another area to create the much-needed space. The new area will be serviced with water, sewer, and electricity.
Water Tanks and Chemical toilets have also been procured as a temporary relief measure to afford the residents of Karsene informal settlement dignity during this difficult period.
The City will in the next few weeks, evacuate the building, for demolition to pave a way for a mixed housing development.
“We send our sincere condolences to the families who lost their lives during this incident. May the families find solace and comfort. Our thoughts are with the families during this difficult time,” said the statement.
Image Iavan Pijoos (Phelelani Zulu, who works as a security guard in Germiston, said he lost everything in the blaze).