Furniture dealers operating in Bwaise Industrial Area, Kawempe Division in Kampala, are counting losses following a fire outbreak early this morning that left property worth millions destroyed.
The fire that started around 4.00 am razed more than 150 timber workshops, and traders say by the time police arrived, there was little to be saved.
The Police fire fighting team from Kawempe Police station extinguished the fire but the doors, beds,chairs, timbers and other items in workshops had all been reduced to ashes.
Whereas the source and cause of the fire remain a matter of police investigation, traders said illegal electricity connections could have been the root cause of this fire.
Over 300 traders are estimated to be operating in the area.
Yahaya Mutamba who has been dealing in timber for over 20 years said he left his business at around 9:00 pm on Friday, but only to receive a phone call from one of his workmates informing him of the fire that destroyed two of his workshops. He estimates his total loss to be over 3 million shillings.
Mande Musinguzi another traders affected by the fire said he abandoned teaching at Upper secondary school Nsambya to venture in carpentry as a result of COVID-19 when schools closed.
Musinguzi said his family of five people has been depending on the workshop for survival.
He calls for government intervention to help the affected traders reinstate their businesses but also implored police to improve fore emergency response services with fire fighting vehicle stationed in fire-prone areas around Kampala including Bwaise industrial area .