According to a female victim, occupants were away at a ‘nine-night’ for the father of one of the children, only to return to find that the house had been broken into when they returned home about 1:00 am. The woman said that upon realizing that at least one cellular phone, two pairs of pants, a parcel of soap, and at least $7,000 in cash were stolen from the premises, the occupants started cursing about the brazenness of the bandits.
However, it appeared that speaking out against the robbery angered the criminals who returned to the premises about 4:00 am and tossed a bottle bomb into the house, setting it on fire.
“Everybody was in the house sleeping and we just heard the explosion and the fire started from that side,” said the woman, pointing over charred debris to a section of the yard.
“Is that time everybody wake up and run outta the house. We try but we couldn’t save nutten,” said the woman, adding that the other female occupant of the premises was burnt on her arm as she ushered her children from the inferno.
The woman said a four-burner stove, a microwave, a DVD player, and at least one television set was lost in the fire. Yesterday, a burnt metal frame of a bed was also seen strewn among the debris. So, too, were books and other partially burnt reading material.
“Everybody sad,” said the woman, explaining that the house, except for its verandah, was made of board.
Though lamenting her loss, the woman was more concerned about her female neighbour who, she said, spent little time assessing the damage yesterday morning, as she had to go and oversee for her father’s autopsy. She said also that the incident has deeply affected her child’s father, whose work clothes were burnt in the fire.
He (child’s father) left the house after the blaze and had not contacted anyone up to late yesterday morning, she said.