A single father and his three children are now homeless following an alleged arson attack in South Oropouche on Friday.
Russel Rampersad and his children of Mon Desir Road, Dow Village, have been staying at a neighbour's home while police investigate the cause of the blaze.
A close relative was questioned by police and Rampersad said a dispute over land could have triggered the fire.
He explained that three months ago, his 15-year-old daughter, 14-year-old son and a six-year-old son came to live with him at his home following the death of their mother and later their grandmother.
Rampersad said a relative did not want the children to live on the premises.
"They started to pick on the children and threatened them. They began locking the gate. I don't know why," Rampersad said. This lead to an altercation. He said two days before the arson, the suspect began placing sheets of galvanise around their home.
"I left home on Friday to go to work and the children went to school. While I was there I got a call that the house was on fire," he said.
Neighbour Adesh Sirju said he heard the sound of the flames and began calling for help. However, he said the gate was locked.
"We called and called but they never came out or opened the gate. They never called the fire brigade. We called the fire officers and when they got here they had to break the gate to enter," Singh said.
He said the police later came and questioned the suspect. When Guardian Media visited a van near the Rampersad's burnt home had been smashed. All of the windscreens, and rear and front windows were shattered and rock was seen on the trunk of the van. There were shards of broken glass and bottles as well as stones on the stairs of the house.
Police said the suspect denied being responsible for any arson but said he was a victim of vandalism. Fire prevention officers found evidence of a flammable substance on the grounds around the smouldering remains of the two-bedroom wooden house.
Rampersad is appealing to the public to assist them.
Another neighbour Boya Lalsingh said it was unfortunate that the children now had to suffer because of greed. He said Rampersad's home was built on the land years ago but within recent times, another relative was trying to pressure him to leave the property.
"Things escalated when he brought the children here. We want the police to investigate and give us justice because this is not a nice thing," Lalsingh said.
Anyone wanting to assist the family can contact Rampersad at 301-1824.