Poorly structured houses pose a threat to residents
In a space of three months, several houses were destroyed by fire and in all occasions, affected families got nothing from the houses.
Now the majority of residents in Reigate district in Bulawayo metropolitan province are now living in fear because this problem.
Most of the houses in the district were built more than forty years ago but the problem is not with the lifespan of the houses but the workmanship of the company that was contracted to build the houses.
Some of the houses are thatched. In an area where termites are in abundance, the thatch is easily destroyed and even the electrical wiring is damaged resulting in short circuits.
Along Longford road, two houses adjacent to each other were destroyed by fire in separate incidents. The owners of the houses however blame the Zimbabwe Electricity Supplies Authority for the fire. The erratic load shading exercise by the power utility cause residents to leave some electrical gadgets such as stoves connected. When power is restored there is a big risk of fire.
Most of the residents in our community are poor retired people who cannot afford to renovate the houses and rewire them.
Women and children are the most at risk because they spend more time at home than their male counterparts.