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Valhalla Park: Victim ashamed to start school

Shane Morkel is not looking forward to starting school after losing all his clothes in the fire.

Children and their parents are seen walking around the burnt out remains of their Valhalla Park homes after a massive blaze in late December 2013. Picture: Rahima Essop/EWN.

CAPE TOWN - A young Valhalla Park fire victim says he is not looking forward to going back to school after a blaze destroyed his family home.

While the 2014 school year commences from next week, 15-year-old Shane Morkel, who is expected to start grade 9 this year, says his school clothes burnt along with the rest of his and his family's belongings.

Morkel's home was among 350 shacks that burned to the ground in a fire started by an illegal electrical connection.

Morkel says the incident will affect his performance at school.

"I'm not excited because I don't have school clothes. I'm very emotional and I'm worried about what my friends are going to think about me because I don't have a place to stay and I'm homeless."

Around 1,400 people were left homeless when a fire broke out at the Agstelaan informal settlement just a week before Christmas.

At least 18 people were hurt, with some people treated for smoke inhalation and dehydration.