The fire that extensively damaged the Electricity Supply Corporation of Malawi (Escom) building in commercial city of Blantyre on 18th October, 2013 was not the result of foul play, an investigation carried out by a South African Incendium Fire Investigations has established.
The fire destroyed all property on the ground floor and part of the first and second floors of Escom House.
Escom has always been a “hot-spot” for fraud involving politicians and as such many suspected foul play involved in the fire to conceal evidence about fraud.
However, the investigation report indicates that there were insufficient interpretable fire patterns to allow for determination of an area of fire origin during the interior inspection.
ESCOM Public Relations Officer Kitty Chingota said the findings will put to rest all the rumour and assertions that the fire was set.
“This puts the matter to rest. There were many rumours going on around, some claim there was sabotage while others said other things, but the forensic report shows that the fire was an accident. I believe this answers people’s queries” Chingota is quoted in the press as saying.
The published report also indicates that Escom Management in its recommendation letter to the Office of the President and Cabinet (OPC) has asked for the complete or partially demolition of the first floor slab of the building based on an assessment carried out by Romana Consulting Engineering.
The general investigations of the fire started on October 28, 2013.