By SLOVO DYIRA and SIBABALWE TAME
Well-known local mechanic, Qhelile Fesi, was shattered when his family home burnt to the ground on 18 January. Although nobody was physically injured, Fesi said it “damaged him” to lose the house he grew up in to fire.
“I was born here, I grew up here, I did everything here,” said Fesi.
Fesi says it was a water-off day when the fire started and nobody was at his home. Neighbours rushed to help with buckets of water but by the time Fesi rushed home, he was too late to save his house.
“Everything was burnt during the fire. There is nothing left,” said Fesi, adding that he believes the cause of the fire to be a load shedding-related power surge.
Business inherited from father burns down too
Fesi lost his business too – a business he loved and inherited from his father, who taught him to fix cars. The friendly mechanic is well known in the community for having mentored people into the mechanic trade. However, his clients are still bringing their cars to him to fix.
“My business is not the same as before, but it is coming along bit by bit,” he said. The keys of his clients’ cars also burnt during the fire, and unfortunately he is now required to compensate them for this loss. He has also received a quote for R23 000 for damages to one of his client’s cars, which he now has to pay.
Former Makana Executive Mayor Nomhle Gaga’s car was also at Fesi’s shop for repairs when the fire occurred but although it was burnt, Gaga has not asked Fesi to pay for the damages.
Meanwhile, Fesi has had to move in with one of his children. He received two mattresses and a Jojo water tank from the municipality’s disaster management division and was visited by a councillor
Makana Brick comes to the rescue
Local business Makana Brick have donated 10 pallets of bricks for Fesi to rebuild his home and business and Khaya Blocks has promised cement. People have also donated clothes.
“I am hoping for any person who is willing to help, to do so,” said Fesi.
Mr Fesi can be contacted on 073 892 6028.