Some traders at Mpunga Market in Zomba on Tuesday had astounded morning when the market was gutted to ashes in the night.
Zomba City Council Principal Fire Officer, Lodius Sendaluzi told Malawi News Agency in an interview that the fire started mid night when the rain showers were falling.
He said close residents did not report the fire to his office instead was just sharing with friends about the accident.
“Our office received the report about the fire at Mpunga Market from well wishers who stay at Naisi, a distance of about 10 kilometres from Mpunga Market,” the Principal Fire Officer said explained.
Sendaluzi added that the moment his office received the report, the fire had already damaged the shops at the market.
According to an eye witness, the fire started from one of the shops and extended rapidly to other shops, burning properties to ashes.
“No one could control the fire because it spread to other shops rapidly,” the eye witness said.
He added that 10 shops that were damaged caught fire easily because they were all made of wood.
Meanwhile the extent of damage is yet to be known as officials from police, department of fire, ESCOM and concerned stakeholders are yet to conduct assessment.
A similar incident took place at Prison Headquarters in Zomba two weeks ago where administration offices were gutted by fire, damaging properties worth over K20 million.