38 houses destroyed in fire near Sedgefield


A total of 38 houses were destroyed in a fire in Smutsville, Sedgefield on Wednesday. A total of 81 persons, including 28 children of various ages, are affected by the tragedy.

Ralph Stander, chairman of Knysna United, expressed his deepest condolences and sympathy to the families. “We would like to assure them that we, together with the wider Knysna community, will assist them in their hour of need.”

Stander says the tragedy could have been prevented.

Knysna United convened a public meeting in February 2023 and council members, including mayoral committee member Waleed Grootboom, attended the meeting.

“The community found there are no working fire extinguishers or fire or disaster plan for Hornlee, Smutsville and other informal areas. The community also needs a fire station in Hornlee and councilors have undertaken that they will present the matter to the council.”

The council has so far not responded to any requests from Knysna United, says Stander.

“We would like to thank Gift of the Givers and all the community organizations and workers who gave their time and effort to assist the victims. Many thanks to everyone who reached out to assist those in need.”