South-African president Cyril Ramaphosa has announced that “someone is being held” in connection with the fire that started in the early hours and consumed parts of the parliament complex in Cape Town.
The incident took place hours after the funeral of Archbishop Desmond Tutu who passed away last Sunday.
“This is devastating news, it is a terrible and devastating event.
Particularly after we gave the Arch what I would call the best send-off yesterday.
Yesterday was a day crowned with celebration, a day crowned with sending off our beloved Archbishop and to wake up to the devastating news of the burning down of the Assembly or Parliament is a terrible setback to what we were basking in yesterday”, said the South-African President.
Ramaphosa added that the sprinkler system did not function as expected and investigations continue.
“We’re still going into what caused the fire and the fire having started in the old Assembly, how it then moved to the national assembly – something that will still be investigated.
I believe somebody is being held right now and being questioned.
But we need to go a lot deeper”, reassured the president.
No casualities have been reported in the fire.
Cape Town has been home to South Africa’s houses of parliament since 1910, including the National Assembly and the upper house National Council of Provinces, while the government is based in Pretoria.
South African arrests man over fire outbreak