Johannesburg, Jan 23 (EFE).- The South African Police today arrested the person allegedly responsible for the fire in a building in Johannesburg (north) that left at least 77 dead last September, authorities confirmed.
“The 29-year-old man has been arrested after confessing to the commission of inquiry that he was involved in starting the tragic fire,” said South African Police spokesman Colonel Dimakatso Nevhuhulwi, according to local media.
“He is expected to appear in a Johannesburg court soon,” he added.
According to local media, the suspect confessed that he started the fire to try to hide a murder he had committed inside the building.
He allegedly strangled another man to death, poured gasoline on the body, and then threw a lit match on the victim.
The fire occurred in a five-story building called “Usindiso Homeless Shelter,” owned by the city and leased to an NGO.
South African President Cyril Ramaphosa then promised an investigation into the incident, which he called a “great tragedy,” and postponed a message to the nation he had planned to give to travel to Johannesburg.
The chairman of the African Union (AU) Commission (secretariat), Moussa Faki Mahamat, also regretted the fire and expressed “strong solidarity” with Ramaphosa and the “people of South Africa.” EFE