Residents from neighboring houses came to the aid of schoolgirls when they were blocked in the fire-ridden building of the school in the District Six area in Cape Town.
The fire service received a message about the burning school building at around 4:00 pm on Wednesday. The message on ignition was received from the corner of Nelson and Pontac streets.
As soon as a local resident, Justin Jones, noticed the smoke coming from the windows of the school alias “the old Rahmaniyeh boarding school” he immediately rushed to the main entrance and began to warn all residents about a fire.
“They let us in and we tried to go and open the door [leading toward the affected room at the back of the building].
We couldn’t open the door so we broke windows,” Justin Jones said to journalists.
In a great hurry and desire to help, he could not recall how many girls he helped to get out of the burning building. Selflessly rushed to help, he did not notice minor burns on his head. He received medical treatment right on the scene by an ambulance team.
At the same time, other locals began to come to his aid. Natasha Edwards was among them.
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“I helped some of the girls out through another gate, and Jones took all the girls to neighbouring houses,” Edwards said on Wednesday evening.
“Severe fire damage was caused to the res and office block of the school. No injuries were reported and all the learners were accounted for. The cause of the fire is still under investigation,” the City of Cape Town fire and rescue service’s representative Edward Bosch said.