Child dies in Highfields house fire

Date:

HARARE – A Heroic Harare man put his life on the line in the early hours of yesterday, but his best efforts could not save the life of a toddler who died from severe burns sustained in a fire.

A 27-year-old woman has since been arrested, for leaving her baby alone at home, in Harare’s high density suburb of Highfield, while she went out partying with her boyfriend. The toddler, who was only 21-months-old, Patience, died on admission at Sally Mugabe Hospital.

Emmely Ndaradze, only found her way back home at around 6am on Saturday, to be met with the tragic news that her daughter had died in a fire, which broke out at their home, overnight.

The cause of the fire is believed to have been a candle, which had been left burning, when Ndaradze left home, in the company of her boyfriend, to have some fun. Ndaradze’s landlord, Emmanuel Mutariri, was the hero who put his life on the line, to try and save the kid’s life.

He said he woke up after smoke from the fire spread into his room.

“I woke up around 1:30am, after smoke from the fire choked me, and I initially thought I had left a cigarette burning, and I had caused the fire myself,” he told H-Metro.

“I quickly dashed out but discovered that the fire was coming out of Ndaradze’s room. “I then tried putting it out, using water and sand, but it got worse. “Moments later, I heard the baby crying from the room, and knew I had to do something extraordinary to save her.”

Mutariri, who sustained burns on his shoulders and arms, said he covered himself with a wet blanket, and went into the room, to try and rescue the minor.

“It was hard work, putting the fire out.

“When I heard the child screaming I quickly took a blanket, poured water over it and braved the flames, to try and save the child.

“I managed to take her out, she was still breathing but she had already sustained burns on her face, arms and legs.

“Other neighbours and I then immediately agreed to take her to the nearest hospital,” said Mutariri.

He said they tried to call Ndaradze, while they were on their way to the hospital, but her mobile phone was not reach-able.

The child was later pronounced dead, on admission, at hospital. A postmortem will be conducted today to ascertain the cause of death.

Ndaradze is expected to appear in court this week.

[H-Metro]

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