Christ Church school fire suspected arson – Benn

The fire which destroyed the Christ Church Secondary School last Thursday is suspected to have been caused by arson. This was revealed by Home Affairs Minister Robeson Benn on Sunday.
According to Benn, the Police are also working on a few leads and are expected to question some of the presumed suspects today.
“The Fire Service are to give us a report… but I want to suspect that it was maliciously set or arson. The Police are working on a couple of leads and they might be pulling in a couple more people for questioning tomorrow,” he stated.
Meanwhile, Education Minister Priya Manickchand told this publication that the Ministry is still looking at possible locations for the accommodation for students and teachers. On Friday last, the Ministry announced that classes would be held online for students to continue their education until a physical location can be decided upon.
Last Thursday afternoon, a blazing fire destroyed the Christ Church Secondary School. The Guyana Fire Service’s best efforts could not contain the hungry blaze that soon swept westwards to the buildings at the back of the school, and destroyed the entire top wooden half along with other sections of the Grade ‘A’ secondary learning institution.
Within the span of 45 minutes, one could see through the remaining structure, made only of beams and crumbled concrete and walls.
Minister Manickchand expressed her disappointment for the inconvenience caused by the incident as she expressed great sympathy for the 502 students and teachers who will now be put at a disadvantage.
Manickchand lamented, “And it’s an expensive enterprise, but it’s not just the expense, it’s the inconvenience. Schools take time to build, kids writing CXC this year have their SBAs in this building now, their lab books in this building now.”
“They’re writing in a couple of months so we have a whole set of things to…figure out. We know that the building was properly wired because last week…to get a connection back from GPL we had to have an inspection and approval from GPL… that says it’s properly wired. So, I’m waiting to see what is the reason for this fire,” the Minister added.
“It is beyond devastating, it’s indescribable, it’s a huge loss to us this is a List-A school…any school that we lose is a huge loss to us. This is the third school in Georgetown that went up in flames, and we’re struggling with space… to accommodate the other two schools so you can imagine the position this will put us in,” Manickchand previously said. Also present at the incident was Minister Benn. Benn pointed out the obvious elephant in the room; the coincidence needed for two fires to break out at the same building, one week apart.
“It would appear passing strange and it would test the probability that within two or three weeks we can have a fire at the same building at a prominent building in Georgetown, where hundreds of children are working on their SBAs and other things. We cannot afford the loss of these assets,” he remarked.
“I’m not speculating. I’m merely saying that it’s passing strange and it’s a tremendous blow,” he clarified.