Johannesburg - Joburg is bearing the brunt of successive tragic events that claim innocent lives unabatedly.
The recent fire incident that happened in central Joburg is just another reminder of how the province has seen the worst in the past few months.
Over 70 people were certified dead after a fire gutted a five-story building, leaving over 40 injured yesterday.
This happened a month after the city was rocked by a gas explosion that left many injured and displaced on Lillian Ngoyi Street (formerly Bree Street).
Scores of people were injured in the incident, and there was one reported fatality. Many revealed that they lived in fear of what would happen next.
In July, 17 people were reported to have died at the Angelo informal settlement in Boksburg from fumes of a toxic gas presumed to be linked to illegal mining.
Gauteng Premier Panyaza Lesufi, who visited the scene, revealed that the province was under siege by illegal miners.
“Preliminary investigations have revealed that the nitrate oxide was being used by illegal miners in the area,” Lesufi said.
South Africans were also introduced to the dark world of zama-zamas (illegal miners), which has seen a tremendous rise over the years.
As they continue to wreak havoc in the province, tremors of various magnitudes have become the norm.
Political parties including the DA blame illegal miners for the continued tremors, and as a result, initiated a petition against them.
“The illegal mining is a cause of major concern for residents. It causes huge tremors and is accompanied by explosions and gunfights between rival gangs.
“Not only does the illegal activity have a major impact on the environment (due to holes, blocked rivers, and broken sewerage lines), it is damaging infrastructure and assets, chasing away businesses, and putting the lives and health of residents at risk,” says the petition.
The Boksburg gas tanker explosion in December was among the worst incidents that gutted the province, with over 40 people reported to have been killed.
The tanker that exploded under a low-lying railway bridge near the Tambo Memorial Hospital on Christmas Eve also left scores of people injured.
Zama zamas also broke the news last year after they robbed and raped some of the women who were filming a music video at a mine dump in Krugersdorp, West Rand.
There has been a rise in shack fires in the past few months, with numerous deaths reported as well.
A few days ago, five children burnt to death when a fire ripped through six shacks in an informal settlement in Pretoria.
Further reports revealed that their parents were out drinking in a tavern when the blazing fires claimed their lives.
Tavern shootings have been constantly making headlines, with many establishments revealed to be targets of mass shootings.