The bustling Remera commercial center was an unusual scene this morning as Hotel Chez Lando caught fire at around 11:30 local time. Fortunately, the damage was limited to the conference hall where it started.
Anne Marie Kantengwa, the CEO of the hotel, explained that the fire accident shocked them but is also thankful that it made minimal damage and their daily activities won’t be interrupted.
“It has been helpful that we installed fire extinguishing systems which were used by our workers immediately as we waited for police support. We are grateful the police arrived on time and prevented the fire from spreading to all our buildings,” she said, adding that the cause of the fire is still unknown and investigations are going on.
“We are going to immediately rehabilitate the damaged house (conference hall) and we are convinced that it will not take long. The message to our clients is that the hotel is operating as usual (90% of our buildings are safe; sleeping rooms, the restaurant, lounge, the reception hall), Kantengwa explained.
Chief Superintendent Emmanuel Hitayezu, who is also Kigali’s police spokesperson, hailed the use of fire extinguishers before they arrived.
Police and fire-fighters putting off the fire
“We are really glad that no one died, and that the fire did not cause great damage. This is a result of rapid action and we take this opportunity to remind, every person – mainly business owners – to do the same. Let them install fire extinguishing systems and use them as they seek external support,” he said.
Hotel Chez Lando was built by Lando and Hélène Ndasingwa in the mid-eighties long before the neighborhood became the bustling Remera commercial center it is today.