Bibi Hafeena Azeez, 55, a resident of the United Kingdom who also has properties in Guyana, is at her
wits end after her four-bedroom house went up in a blaze of fire days after she left for her home in the UK. Even worse is her suspicion that her own brothers may have had a hand in razing the property.
The fire, which occurred at 56B Bush Lot Village, West Coast Berbice, around midnight on Sunday night, is suspected to have stemmed from a family dispute. The house, which is owned by the United Kingdom-based Guyanese, was in the process of being occupied by the family’s longstanding caretaker, Juanita La Rose.
La Rose, a single parent with five children and the domestic worker on the property, was fortunately in Canal at the time of the fire. According to her, she was asleep when she was awakened by phone calls from neighbours who alerted her to the fire. She was also sent pictures of the burning building.
According to the woman, who had been a resident domestic worker at the property for years, her occupancy of the house had always been a problem with some sections of the family, notably Azeez’s siblings. She had always wanted to rent her own property, so Azeez had arranged for her to stay at the house with her children.
The woman is however thanking her lucky stars that she did not stay with her kids at the house, for it was then that her troubles started. The woman is contending that the brothers took issue to the preferential treatment she was accorded, and threatened her and her family on several occasions, in the lead up to the fire.
According to the woman, from what neighbours told her, they spotted the fire when it was in its early stages and called out to the brothers without getting any response.
According to what was related to her by the neighbours, it was only when the fire had reached astronomical proportions that the three brothers exited to observe the fire and they did not even try to put the fire out.
Moreover, La Rose said, just before the fire erupted the brothers had removed all of their vehicles- trucks- from the front of the property, something that was in itself unusual since they normally blocked the entrance every night with their vehicles.
Meanwhile, over in the UK, Azeez is calling for a thorough investigation. According to her, during an earlier interview with local police, she was told that she would have to come home immediately to facilitate the investigation. This has left her upset, since she had only left late last week.
The woman has placed her losses in the region of $15M.
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