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Fire guts NC school

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The cause of the fire is not yet known and a case of arson has been opened

BURNED DOWN: Approximately 300 pupils from Sonskyn Intermediate School will not have a classroom to go to after 11 classrooms burned down on Saturday evening. Picture: Supplied

THE NORTHERN Cape MEC for Education will today visit a school in Prieska that was partially gutted by fire on the weekend.

The Northern Cape police yesterday confirmed that a case of arson had been opened after more than 10 classrooms at Sonskyn Intermediate School in Marydale, Prieska burned down on Saturday evening.

“Marydale police are investigating a case of arson following an incident where a local school became engulfed in an inferno on Saturday night. The cause of the fire is being investigated but no arrests have been made in connection with the incident,” police spokesperson, Captain Olebogeng Tawana, said yesterday.

The Northern Cape Department of Education yesterday confirmed that Sonskyn Intermediate School partially burned down during the incident.

“At this stage the cause of the fire is not yet known and we have opened a case of arson at the Marydale police station,” department spokesperson, Geoffrey van der Merwe, said.

He added that the school accommodates 613 pupils and preliminary reports indicated that 11 classrooms burned down, directly affecting more than 300 pupils.

“A team from the department, led by the MEC for Education, Martha Bartlett, will visit the school on Monday (today) to assess the damage and communicate our contingency plans to the pupils and educators. “We are encouraging any member of the community with information to come forward, as it will assist the SAPS with their investigation,” Van der Merwe concluded.