Zimbabwe — Twenty-two Hurungwe families from Zvipani under Chief Dandawa, who lost their homes to a veld fire a fortnight ago, have received a donation of several food and clothes from various organisations.
Handing over the donation which included blankets to the affected families on Tuesday, Mashonaland West Provincial Governor Cde Faber Chidarikire bemoaned the magnitude of damage that veld fires were causing to both the environment, people and property.
He urged villagers in the area to construct fire guards wide enough to shield their homes against veld fires.
Cde Chidarikire also warned the villagers to desist from being used by non-governmental organisations that might try to take advantage of their plight and attach political strings to the aid they distributed.
The governor said the provision of aid should never be politicised.
Two weeks ago, a veld fire from Zvimhonja area swept through three villages in Zvipani leaving 22 homes in its trail completely destroyed. According to eyewitness Teererai Nyamangara (34), the blaze was so strong it could present a challenge even to the Fire Brigade.
Hurungwe Rural District Council chief executive officer Mr Joram Moyo who has up to now been shuttling to the area since the disaster struck, described the inferno as the worst ever to be experienced in Hurungwe in the past 25 years.
The Hurungwe District Disaster Management Committee, which comprises of all line ministries and non-governmental organisations in the area and headed by the district administrator of the area Ms Tsana Chirau was quick to respond to the disaster with basic supplies to the affected families. T
he International Organisation of Migration, through Lead Trust, donated tents while GOAL Zimbabwe, World Vision, Save the Children UK and CADEC, among other organisations working in the area donated buckets, toiletries, foodstuffs, clothing and blankets among other things. Police are investigating the case to establish who caused the fire.
Although there were no fatalities in this incident, veld fires have so far claimed two lives in Karoi this year. Last month, a 70-year-old woman, Martha Mazorodze, died after she was engulfed by a raging fire while she tried to save her stacks of thatch grass at Fiddlers Green Farm near Karoi.
Police said the fire could have been caused by a negligent 10 year-old girl who disposed of ashes that had embers. Mazorodze died soon after admission at Karoi Hospital. A five-day-old infant was burnt beyond recognition at Helwyn Farm outside Karoi recently.