No fewer than 80 houses have been razed by fire at Trans-Woji area of Port Harcourt. The fire at Peace Valley Estate on Thursday rendered about 200 residents homeless and destroyed properties said to run into millions of naira.
The houses, all shanties, were erected on five plots of land owned by a native of Woji community.
This happened barely five days after fire had burnt the house of traditional ruler in Rumu-Woji community, killing one.
There have been series of fire outbreaks in Port Harcourt since the end of last year.
The climax was the New Year event that led to the sack of the former state commissioner for Special Duties, Mr. Emeka Nwogu, by Governor Romiti Amaechi.
It was gathered that the fire raged between 5pm and 7pm Thursday.
Help did not come the way of the victims early as fire fighters from the state fire service arrived when the fire had almost abated.
It was gathered that the fire started from one of the shanties after the Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) restored power supply.
Most of the occupants were not around when the fire started and lost all their belongings to the fire.
When The Nation visited the scene yesterday evening, some of the victims were sighted lurking around the neighbourhood stranded.
Victims appealed for assistance from the state government.
A builder, Mr. Wisdom Samuel Aso, who lost all his property to the fire disaster, passionately appealed for relocation by the government.
“I beg the governor to come to our help; we are law abiding citizens of this country. We are not criminals.
“I went to work at Buguma when a neighbour called and told me that the compound was on fire, nothing was rescued from my house and as we speak now, my wife put to bed two days ago and is still in the hospital. I don’t have anywhere to go with them now,” he lamented.