A Tafelsig family are mourning the loss of two children, aged six and 11, who died in a fire at their home in Suurberg Street at the weekend.
According to the City of Cape Town’s Fire and Rescue Services, the family’s wendy house caught fire in the early hours of the morning, on Sunday March 5.
The two brothers Shakier, 11, and Nashrudien Smart, 6, died on the scene, and their sister Shakierah, 9, is at Red Cross Children’s Hospital recovering from her injuries.
Spokeswoman for the City’s Fire and Rescue Services, Liezl Moodie, said the cause of the fire is still undetermined and that the City’s Disaster Risk Management Service had been activated and the necessary assistance was and is being provided.
The children’s mother, Sharon Smart said at around midnight she went to the shop to buy coffee and sugar, and asked the neighbour to keep an eye on her children.
Upon her return, she saw her house in flames.
“I remember going to the shop with my R20 to get some items. As I came back, I saw a fire. I didn’t think it was my house, I thought it is the area behind us.
“But as I came closer, and heard one of the neighbours scream ‘it is your house burning; I ran home,” an emotional Ms Smart said.
“All I could think about was my children – it was like I died inside when I heard that they didn’t make it,” she said.
Ms Smart said during the fire little Shakierah tried to help her brothers out of the house but she wasn’t successful in her brave attempts.
“Everything happened so fast. My daughter shouted for help to the front house and outside when she saw the flames. She then went back to help her brothers. When she found Shakier, she pulled at him, but he was worried about his baby brother Nashrudien who was also inside.
“As she walked out she fell and was assisted,” she said.
Ms Smart said their loss is still unbelievable. “I cannot believe this happened … we are still dealing with what had happened.
“My kids were my life.
“Shakierah is recovering in hospital, traumatised and cannot forget what happened. She is getting the support and help needed and hopefully she will be home soon,” she said.
Their father, Shaun, thanked the residents who assisted the family that morning.
Looking at a picture of Shakier as a baby, he said: “I will miss my boys. I will miss their smiles, their voices and presence.
“I can only imagine what they went through in the fire, but they are now in a better place,” he said.
Shakier was a pupil at Huguenot Primary School in Tafelsig where he was active in sport. “He loved soccer and played for the school.
“He was a busy and helpful child and loved by many.
“Just last week he asked us if he could join a klopse band, as he would forever be making beats with his stick and a bucket for his drum,” Mr Smart said.
Speaking about his youngest son, Mr Smart said Nashrudien was friendly and would often boss his older siblings around.
Ms Smart said they lost everything in the fire – their house, furniture, clothing and food. “We lost everything in the fire. Any donations will be appreciated,” he said.
To assist the Smart family, you can call 060 419 7281.
In June last year, eight family members perished in a fire in Eastridge in Macbeth Street (“Eight die in Eastridge blaze”, Plainsman, June 15 2016) and in October Tafelsig pastor Thadi Mohotsi survived a fire at his house in Buttress Street (“Pastor recovering after fire at home”, Plainsman,October 26 2016).