KZN tourism MEC to visit Shayamanzi houseboat fire scene

Ernest Mabuza Journalist
A fire on the Shayamanzi I has led to the death of a crew member and guest.
A fire on the Shayamanzi I has led to the death of a crew member and guest.
Image: Supplied

KwaZulu-Natal economic development, tourism and environmental affairs MEC Ravi Pillay has expressed sadness over the deaths of two people in a fire which broke out on a Shayamanzi luxury houseboat.

The department said it was reported earlier on Sunday that a crew member and a German tourist had died during the incident, while one crew member was still missing.

Shayamanzi Luxury House Boats is a long-established family-owned business operating on Lake Jozini near Pongola in northern KwaZulu-Natal.

“I am deeply saddened by this incident and wish to convey my sincere condolences to the families and friends of those who are deceased.

“We welcome the investigation by the SA Maritime Safety Authority and we believe it will help shed some light on the cause of the fire,” Pillay said.

Pillay will on Monday visit Jozini to meet the family of the deceased guest to convey his condolences and will also meet the owners of the establishment as part of the fact-finding mission.

While it is not yet known exactly what happened, it appears that the fire happened on Shayamanzi I — a 25 metre by 8 metre double pontoon houseboat that was first launched by KwaZulu-Natal agriculture and environmental affairs MEC Dr Narend Singh on October 18 2002.

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