Tunatazama - Community Monitors

Fire and explosions after Mining

Gift Rampai

18th April 2022

House No17709 belongs to Nombuso Tseka, she shares the home with 5 other members of her family and the family hasn’t been in the premises for a one year and four months

This is a result of a problem first discovered in October 2020 but it was only on 1st of December 2021 when the danger was realized while children were playing outside and they noticed smoke coming from a crack on the ground.

The irony is that it has been raining the previous night and it was around 10h00 when they saw a fire erupting from the ground after they heard an explosion and the authorities advised that they vacate the premises.

The local ward councillor arranged alternative accommodation in the local community hall and the place was not family friendly and they had to move places in the past one year and four months

The situation was exasperated when the ground was shaking and the fire erupting and the fire department concluded that the problem is out of their jurisdiction and they called in a company called Geo Science because smoke was smelling like gas.

The problem involved

  1. Department of environmental affairs
  2. Eskom
  3. Municipal sewer department
  4. Mining engineers

All of the companies listed above could not provide an explanation for this.

Geo Science has undertook to investigate the problem at a cost of R300 000 that will be paid for by the municipality and it has been a year and four months now. In the mean time the family has been renting a place for R1000 a month after the municipality offered them accommodation in the leafy and affluent suburb of Flamingo Park but the family could not afford the municipal services as no one in the house is employed. The children were far from their school and they could not afford transport every day.

The head of the family brings income into the household by selling fat cakes and sweets to children at the school gate