A large fire destroyed a building and its contents at the state-owned Public Works facility in Arnos Vale on Thursday.
iWitness News understands that security staff at a nearby business place saw the fire and sounded the alarm sometime before 2 p.m.
The building is said to have contained building material purchased for the government’s Lives to Live programme and other government initiatives.
Lives to Live is a social programme under which the government constructs wooden houses for poor, or old Vincentians.
Building material distributed during the campaign for the Dec. 9 general elections as part of the Lives to Live programme and to aid victims of natural disasters is also stored at the facility.
The political opposition and other observers have said that the materials were used to sway the vote, which saw the Unity Labour Party returning to office by a one-seat majority, in a repeat of the 2010 election results.
A fire truck purchased for the incomplete Argyle International Airport was deployed to help fight the fire, which continued to burn past 7 a.m.
Speculations are rife about the cause of the fire, which came in a week when police reported that they two attempts had been made to firebomb the corporate headquarters of the state-owned and sole electricity company in St. Vincent and the Grenadines, VINLEC.
Police say that on Monday, at 12:25 a.m., they responded to a report that a suspicious material appearing to be rubber was seen burning on VINLEC’s Paul’s Avenue compound.
When the police arrived, charred remains of a cloth-like material and fragments of burnt bottle were also found lying on the grass in the yard. There was also odour of flammable fumes coming from the fragments, police say.
This came on the heels of a similar incident, which took place on Friday, when a security guard at the same venue discovered a Molotov cocktail (flambeaux) of pieces of broken bottles and a cloth-like material on the ground behind VINLEC’s office building.
The odour of kerosene also came from the bottle, police say.
#BREAKING: A fire has been blazing for hours at the Public Works facility in #ArnosVale.
Posted by iWitness News on Thursday, January 7, 2016