Four people, including two little children, were burnt to death while trapped inside their Wendy house.
Police are now investigating four counts of murder.
The fire started at about 5.30am and two shacks burnt down on the corners of Japhta and Dljedwa Street, in Bloekombos, in Kraaifontein.
Police say a 30-year-old woman, five-year-old boy and a 10-year-old girl, and another man was killed in the blaze.
It is believed the woman was the children’s aunt, and that their mother had gone out for the night.
Spokesman Captain FC van Wyk says arson was suspected.
“After forensic samples were collected for analysis, four charges of murder were registered at Kraaifontein SAPS, as the K9-detection dog indicated that there were flameables used at the front door of the shack,” Van Wyk says.
Neighbour Thabisa Ntshile, 25, says they were woken up by cries for help in the early hours of the morning.
“The door was locked with a chain around it, I couldn’t kick the door open, the fire was too hot and it was getting closer,” Thabisa says.
“They were all crying for help, it was horrible. The children’s mother wasn’t at home.
“Everyone brought buckets of water to douse the flames, when the fire brigade arrived, everything was already burnt out and they couldn’t save anything.”
Thabisa says the children’s traumatised mother was taken away by authorities.
Anyone with any information is requested to contact Crime Stop on 08600 10111.