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A mysterious fire destroyed part of the Kongowea Market in the wee hours of Sunday.

Eyewitnesses told The Standard that the fire that destroyed the second-hand clothes section, which hosts over 100 tailors and several food kiosks.

''It is a very bad start of 2020,'' Abubakar Nyamawi, a second-hand cloth dealer who said he lost property worth Sh450,000 said.

Nyamawi said that he had restocked his shop in anticipation of New Year and had taken several loans from several lending institutions.

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''I am starring at an early year financial defeat. I only managed to salvage a pair of trouser,'' Nyamawi said.
He blamed area leaders for not coming to their aid in time of need.

''We have not seen any leader coming to console us. It is unfair,'' he said.

Mr. Hassan Mohamed, who chairs security at the clothes section, said that the market security personnel alerted them of the incident. “When we arrived there was little we could do to salvage the situation,” he said.

''We are talking of huge losses here. We ask authorities to launch investigations to ascertain what caused the fire,'' he said.

For Ms. Judith Kawira, a tailor, all her life long savings had gone up in smoke.

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''I am still in shock and was unable to attend church today following the fire that has rendered me jobless,'' she said.

Owners of food kiosks, Lucy and Josephine Moraa said that all their dry food stocks that consisted of maize, beans, rice, cooking oil and utensils were destroyed by the fire.

The market has experienced similar cases of fire in the past.

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Kongowea Market Gikomba Market
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