GOODS worth thousands of dollars were lost on Tuesday evening in an inferno that blazed through Glen View complex in Harare, ruining dozens of small-to-medium investors’ businesses.
The fire is said to have started at around 7pm with such ferocity that efforts to immediately contain it became futile.
The area which was destroyed covers approximately 3 500m² and is used by over 40 people who sell foam rubber used in making mattresses and sofas.
When NewsDay visited the site, several people whose wares had been destroyed were still milling around, contemplating their next move after the inferno.
Some had already started reconstructing some temporary structures and new deliveries of the foam rubber were already arriving on site as they attempted to promptly recoup lost business.
Those who lost goods refused to comment, with some disclosing that suspected Zanu PF members who control the area had barred people from talking to the Press, citing a host of absurd and unclear reasons.
“We have been instructed not to talk to anyone by some men from the party (Zanu PF) who came here earlier in the morning saying their chairman is the only one who is allowed to comment. I lost goods worth over $2 000 because I had just procured new stock and some even lost goods worth over $6 000,” said one of the victims.
“We really do not know why the fire keeps coming back, because a fire cannot just start from nowhere with so much power as if someone has actually added fuel on it,” another eyewitness who also lost goods in the fire, said.
In 2015, another fire at the complex also destroyed goods worth thousands of dollars and the overcrowded business area remains prone to such disasters as numerous SMEs keep sprouting within the area which has proven to be a lucrative market.