Pretoria News

Children die in Mpumalanga fires

- JONISAYI MAROMO

A 3-YEAR-OLD girl died in Mpumalanga when a fire engulfed her family shack. Her mother will now face charges of child neglect and culpable homicide.

This happened at Siyathuthu­ka township in Belfast on Monday night after the mother had left her three children alone in the shack, police spokesman Colonel Donald Mdhluli said.

“Reports indicate that the victim and her siblings aged 7 and 9 years old were left alone by their mother in the shack. When she returned she found the shack engulfed in flames and immediatel­y called for help,” he said.

“The other two children managed to escape the fire unharmed, but not the 3-year-old. A case of culpable homicide has been opened against the woman with an additional charge of child neglect.”

In a similar incident in the province, two girls aged 7 and 8 were burnt to death in a house fire in Masoyi last Friday after they were also left on their own.

“According to informatio­n at the police’s disposal, the two children, who were said to be cousins, were asleep in the house while their parents were away.

“Their uncle was visiting neighbours at the time and it is said that he was notified by one of the neighbours that a light at the house where the children were asleep was off,” said Mdhluli.

“He then went to investigat­e. On his arrival, he realised that the bedroom where the girls were was on fire. He called other neighbours to assist in extinguish­ing the fire. However, the flames were too intense and the girls perished in the fire.”

An inquest case is under way and Mdhluli said a charge of child neglect would be added.

In another incident, a 23-year-old woman was recently arrested in Bushbuckri­dge for child neglect after she allegedly left her three children, aged 4 and 5, as well as a 9-month-old baby unattended.

Police said her family opened a missing person report with the police and after a search she was found at a tavern last Friday.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from South Africa