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Monday, May 27, 2024

Bulawayo’s Mutize flea market gutted down by fire

Story by Yolanda Moyo

PROPERTY worth half a million United States Dollars was destroyed after one of Bulawayo’s popular flea markets known as KoMutize was razed down by fire early Wednesday morning.

The place had become home to many vendors who would come and buy wares for resell in and around Bulawayo.

When ZBC news arrived at the scene, the affected vendors were still trying to come to terms with the devastating reality.

“I received a call around 11 pm that there was a fire and l called other people who have stalls here and drove to the scene. When l came here there was fire almost everywhere and nothing could be taken out. We are still trying to come to terms with what happened because this is where our source of finance was. This place was our workplace and l just boosted my wares recently and now all is gone. I have children going to school, we have rentals how are we going to survive,” said a vendor.

The Director of Mutize And Sons Flea Market Chains Mr Samuel Mutize said over 200 vendors were affected after property worth over US$500 000 was destroyed.

“We are in a devastating crisis as Mutize and Sons, this inferno affected 220 people. Property worth over US$$500 000 was lost,” he said.

The Bulawayo Micro, Medium and Small Enterprises Association is compiling a report to assist the victims.

“We are compiling a report so that the affected are assisted because this was their life line and recently some of them had received loans from banks to assist them to boost their business,” noted Mr Dumisani Ncube, Bulawayo Micro, Medium and Small Enterprises Chairperson.

A report by the City of Bulawayo Fire Service Department reveals that there were gas cylinders and stoves in the flea market.

The cause of the fire is yet to be ascertained.

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