Shack fire victims to be relocated

Shack fire victims in Nelson Mandela Bay will be placed at different areas.

Shack fire victims in Nelson Mandela Bay will be placed at different areas. Picture: Aletta Gardner/EWN

CAPE TOWN - The Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality on Sunday said it was busy trying to identify land to relocate scores of people that were left homeless after a fire.

About 300 shacks caught fire at Chris Hani Informal Settlement, leaving 2,000 people homeless last week.

A multi-disciplinary committee was formed to co-ordinate relief efforts.

Aid organisation Gift of the Givers has committed to building 100 new structures for the victims.

Municipal spokesperson Marthi Nel said residents that were displaced were still housed at local schools.

"The fire victims will not be returned to the burnt out land. That was an informal settlement and it was not suitable [for living in]."


Cape Town Disaster Risk Management said the necessary relief aid would continue to be provided to residents who were left homeless during the devastating News Year's shack fire in Khayelitsha.

A fifth person who sustained severe burn wounds in the blaze died at Tygerberg Hospital on Friday.

The 26-year-old man's condition deteriorated significantly after he was admitted to hospital.

The vicious blaze gutted more than 800 informal dwellings, displacing about 3,000 people in the BM section.

Disaster Risk Management's spokesperson Wilfred Solomon-Johannes said, "Our engineers, cleansing and specialised engineering unit are on site to clear and rehabilitate the area."

To view a report on the Khayelitsha fire click here