A fire accident that likely resulted from an electrical fault left dozens of traders living at the S. Nyahokwe Shopping Mall at the intersection of First Street and George Silundika Avenue in Harare’s central business district to count their losses after thousands of dollars’ worth of goods were burned to ashes.
Although the Fire Brigade was on the scene to put out the fire, the majority of the goods on the mall’s first floor’s partitioned storefront were already burned.
After the incident, Mrs. Sipiwe Zvinavashe, a manager at S. Nyahokwe Mall, told The Herald that the Fire Brigade’s prompt response prevented further damage.
“The fire started early this morning, but we do not know how much we have lost so far,” she said. “We do have insurance cover, so we will soon engage the insurance company and figure out how they can assist us.”
The affected traders started evacuating the First Floor, which was the most affected and badly damaged.
One of the traders at the shopping mall, Tanaka Mbiringa, said: “I am devastated after we lost clothes that we were selling. This fire came at a time we were looking forward to making more sales during this festive season.
“Though the Fire Brigade came in fairly quick time, the damage had been done.”
City of Harare Fire Brigade assistant divisional officer, Mr Philip Marufu said they managed to contain the fire before it spread to other shops.
“We have managed to put the fire under control,” he said. “Several shops on the first floor suffered extensive damage, but we are still examining the extent of the damage.”