A Chitungwiza businessman’s house was yesterday gutted by fire, with more than US$50 000 cash burnt inside and nearly all property worth over US$30 000 reduced to ashes in the inferno.
The fire flared up at around mid-day in Zengeza 4 at an area popularly known as Pagomba.
The eye-catching property widely referred to by locals as the “Blue Roof” is situated by the roadside.
While the cause of the fire could not be immediately ascertained, house owner Mr Petros Pamurai said it was suspected that a gas tank exploded in the kitchen.
Despite the house being less than a kilometre from Chitungwiza Municipality’s head office, no help came from council as a fire tender had to be sourced from Harare City Council.
When the fire tender arrived, all the property had been destroyed, with only a mattress and a few utensils being recovered.
A team from national power utility Zesa disconnected the house from main power line.
Mr Pamurai, commonly known in the dormitory town as ‘Petit’ said: “When the fire broke out, there were many people at the house, including my mum, wife and some relatives whom l wanted to drive to Chinhoyi.
“When l received a phone call for me to rush home, I thought it was about the journey, only to find the house on fire. I was told that a gas tank had exploded.”
Mr Pamurai said he also suspected foul play.
“Surprisingly, the fire is said to have spread from the kitchen to other rooms, but the room where l keep my money is the one which had its roof on fire,” he said.
“I had a lot of money. More than US$50 000 and l suspect that someone might have stolen the money and set ablaze the room to cover up their tracks. This is possible as there are a lot of people who frequent the house.”
Mr Pamurai said the destroyed property valued at more than US$30 000 included four mine generators, refrigerators, projectors, television sets, a stove, couch and a kitchen unit.
He said he would temporarily relocate to his other house in Waterfalls.
There were no injuries or deaths.