Pretoria – Relief has come for survivors of the deadly fire that swept through Cemetery View informal settlement in Pretoria East, which left at least three residents dead.
The City of Tshwane, on Sunday, said in conjunction with other stakeholders, they have “activated a humanitarian and social relief plan”.
From about 16:00 on Sunday, buses had begun to transport the survivors to a temporary shelter in Mamelodi.
After the fire on Saturday night, about 2 000 residents of Cemetery View were left in dire straits.
They have nowhere to call home.
They were left with only the clothes they were wearing.
All their belongings went burnt in the fiery fire as it moved swiftly from one house to the next with such speed all that survivors could do was run for their lives.
By the time the city’s Emergency Services Department (ESD) responded the raging fire had engulfed 300 homes, many of them made of corrugated iron sheets attached to a basic wooden frame.
The informal settlement is located next to the Pretoria East Cemetery, behind the Woodlands Mall.
Hence the name “Cemetery View”.
Among those who lost their lives in the blaze were two adults and a child.
In a statement released on Heritage Day the City of Tshwane said its Roads and Transport Department had made available six buses to transport the victims of the fire to temporary accommodation venues arranged at the Stanza Bopape Hall in Mamelodi East, as well as at the community hall in Mamelodi West.
“The city is in negotiations with churches within Region 6 to accommodate other victims. The SA Police Service has taken over the fire scene and cordoned off the area for investigation purposes,” the statement said.
Tshwane’s Community and Social Development Department and ESD were coordinating inter-governmental social relief efforts together with other structures such as SASSA, Social Department, and Human Settlements to ensure that the victims’ plight received the necessary consideration.
“Details about donations, provision of food through the Foodbank, and other related matters will be communicated in due course,” the statement said.
“The Department of Home Affairs will dispatch their Immigration Officers once all the victims have been accommodated and settled.”