Minister of Local Government Vincent Mwale says no property was lost in the fire that swept through City Market last night as it affected stands which were not in use.

There was anxiety among citizens when they woke up to the news that City Market had been gutted again.

But in an interview with News Diggers! today, Mwale said it was a good thing that government had decided not to allow traders to return in the market before it is rebuilt.

“Nobody was trading in there. Nobody has lost any goods or any property because it is still the old market that we had said should not be used again. And I remember the time we made a decision to say nobody should used this market, marketeers were not happy. So you see, I’m sure now they are thinking we made a correct decision because we said nobody should use it until we should build a new market. Nobody has lost property because we had not allowed people to use it, nobody was trading there but it is very very unfortunate although that thing is all awaiting demolition,” Mwale said.

He said government was yet to establish the cause of the fire.

“The most unfortunate thing is that we have to identify why we have this problem of the fire. I will give you a full report, this is a preliminary verbal one. So in terms of fire really its not so much because that thing is going down anyway,” Mwale said.

He explained that fire fighters had to break the roof to stop the fire from spreading as it was highly flammable.

“I will just give you a preliminary report, just a verbal one I’m waiting for the actual one to come. Remember, the market had different colour codes. So now, that side which was gutted, there was a fire break which the fire caused. They broke the roof there because the fire was moving through the roof because the roof was highly flammable. They broke it to make sure that the fire does not spread to the other side. City Market in the middle had a walkway which separated two sides from end to end. When you enter city market there was that walkway spread from one entrance to the other entrance which separated the left side and the right side. So it is still the left side if you enter the market that got gutted and the other half of the left side again is the one that got gutted. So the fire did not cross in the right,” said Mwale.