Three children burnt to death when the mud hut they were sleeping in caught fire at Mabidi village, Vuwani, Limpopo police said on Monday.
The children aged four, six and nine, were sleeping at their 46-year-old grandmother's home at the time of the fire in the early hours of Sunday morning, police spokeswoman Colonel Ronel Otto said.
“It is alleged that the grandmother was not at home when the fire started at approximately 1am on Sunday morning. By the time members of the police arrived on the scene... the two mud houses were already destroyed by the flames,” she said.
The bodies of the three children, Nyeleti, 9, Kulani, 6, and Tintswalo Mathava, 4, were found inside one of the huts.
Otto said the cause of the fire was not known and forensic services would visit the scene to determine the cause.
She said police have opened an inquest docket.
Meanwhile the 28-year-old mother of the three children was previously arrested on stock theft charges with other people, said Otto.
“Allegations that the houses were set alight because the mother of the children was involved in a stock theft case, are currently being investigated,” she said.
“The children's mother, Tshituka Rosemary Mathava, was arrested with four more people on allegations that they stole a cow and slaughtered the animal.”
Otto said Mathava appeared in court and was released on bail.
Investigations continue. - Sapa