Fire Reignites at South African Parliament

Strong winds reignited a fire at the South African Parliament in Cape Town on Jan. 3 after firefighters declared it under control hours earlier.

Firefighters believed the fire was brought under control but the flames restarted, causing many to rush back to the site with some working through the night.

“It’s proving difficult in this wind,” Firefighter Spokesperson Jermaine Carelse told AFP News.

Carelse also said “who knows” how much longer it would now take to bring the fire back under control.

According to a statement from the parliament, 34 fighters were actively fighting the fire at the scene with six firefighting appliances and a hydraulic platform.

The fire first broke out early on Jan. 2 in the parliament complex’s oldest wing, then it quickly spread to newer parts.

The parliament was not currently in session because of the holidays.

Authorities reported no injuries and fatalities.

Authorities arrested and charged a 49-year-old man with arson, housebreaking, and theft.

Surveillance cameras allegedly showed the suspect in the building from the early hours of the morning.

The suspect is due to appear in the Cape Town Magistrates Court on Jan. 4.


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