Sharjah building fire: Brother of Kenyan who jumped to his death shares heartbreaking account

Estimated read time 2 min read

Omanua Godfrey Shikanda (inset) was among five people killed in the fire in the residential building in Sharjah’s Al Nahda area on April 4, 2024.

The brother of a Kenyan man who jumped to his death to escape a fire at a building in Sharjah shared heartbreaking details of the expat’s demise.

The victim, Omanua Godfrey Shikanda, was among five people killed in the blaze in the 38-storey residential building in Sharjah’s Al Nahda area on Thursday (April 4). He was 36. His body is expected to be repatriated this week.

Shikanda is survived by his wife and their children in Kenya. His daughter is 14-years-old and his son is six-years-old.

Dickson Okusimba said his brother “must have panicked” when the latter jumped out from the window of his burning apartment on the 30th floor of the building to escape the blaze.

“I believe he was hoping to land safely on a nearby car,” he said. At the time of the fire, Okusimba was on a business trip in Sri Lanka. He received news of his brother’s death the next day, which was confirmed by police.

Okusimba said his brother worked as a supervisor for a company that installs pipes in building and had moved to the UAE nine years ago. He described his brother as a “very generous man”.

According to authorities, the fire started in the electrical transformers in the upper floors, and spread rapidly due to waste materials lying in the hallways. Among the people killed in the blaze were a Filipina, an Indian man and woman, and a Bangladeshi man. The fire also displaced 156 people and injured 44 others, including 10 Filipinos. ICA/Expat Media

ALSO READ: Injured husband of Filipina victim of Sharjah fire recovers in hospital

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