Sympathisers thronged Alade Close, Ikeja, Lagos, yesterday after an early morning fire claimed the lives of a middle-aged businesswoman, her teenage maid and houseboy.
The deceased lived in a two-bedroomed apartment on the top floor of a one-storeyed building on the close.
Newsmen gathered that the woman’s husband and their daughter escaped from the fire, which started around 2am from their living room and spread to another two-bedroomed flat on the floor, whose occupants escaped unhurt.
Although the cause of the fire had yet to be officially determined, some residents claimed that it was caused by an electrical surge.
It was reported that the houseboy, identified only Nonso, had wanted to use the toilet when he met fire burning in the living room and raised the alarm.
The couple were said to have fled downstairs with their child while Nonso battled to rescue the housemaid, who was trapped in the fire.
Report also says when the woman did not see the domestic helps, who were said to be her relations, she returned to the apartment in a desperate attempt to rescue them.
The three of them were thereafter trapped, as residents and men from the Lagos State Fire Service and the state emergency management agency fought to put out the raging fire.