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Man burns to death while lighting cigarette with matchstick

The house that burnt to ashes as Thembinkosi Xulu slept.

A sick man was burnt to death while trying to light a cigarette when his bed caught fire and he couldn’t shout for help in South Africa.

THE family believe the house caught fire when Thembinkosi tried to light a cigarette.

Thembinkosi Xulu (57) from Ulundi, northern KZN, burnt to death on Monday.

His nephew Nkosi Mathabela (34) suspects a matchstick fell on his bed.

“We suspect the match fell on his blanket and he couldn’t shout because of his condition,” he said.

Thembinkosi Xulu from Ulundi burnt to death in his room on Monday.
Thembinkosi Xulu from Ulundi burnt to death in his room on Monday.

“We suspect this because there’s no electrical fault and no candles were used. We have electricity.

“My uncle was weak and his grip even weaker. It was already late by the time the children noticed smoke coming out of his room.”

Thembinkosi and his gogo apparently spoke a bit before she left to make breakfast.

When she was done making him breakfast, she heard kids yelling in the yard that the house was on fire.

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“When she got there the flames were too big to save him,” he said.

Colonel Thembeka Mbele said a 57-year-old man died after his house in Jikaza Reserve caught fire while he was inside. Mahlabathini police were investigating.

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