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Battle to rescue three trapped illegal miners

Battle to rescue three trapped illegal miners

The Shurugwi District Civil Protection Unit (CPU) has since Monday been battling to rescue three illegal gold miners who are trapped after a mine tunnel they were working in collapsed.

The three, whose identities are still to be ascertained, were said to have been searching for gold in a disused Falcon Gold mine tunnel in Shurugwi when it collapsed on Sunday night.

Shurugwi District Development Coordinator, Mr Romeo Shangwa said the rescue efforts yesterday entered day three but they were still to find the trapped miners.

“The major challenge we are facing in our rescue efforts is that the other colleagues who were working with the trapped miners and managed to escape are not forthcoming. 

“Maybe the fear is that if they come out to assist in identifying the exact tunnel, they will be arrested because they were conducting illegal mining activities,” he said.

Mr Shangwa said they mobilised earth moving machinery and compressors to try and open up the shafts.

“Today (yesterday) was day three but the information we got was that the shaft which we have been opening is not the one.

“We lost the direction along the way so the efforts are continuing,” he said.

Mr Shangwa appealed to well wishers to assist with more resources.

“We also appeal to other artisanal miners who were working together with these trapped miners to come forward so that they help us by indicating the exact area their colleagues were working when the mine collapsed,” he said.

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Mr Shangwa said they was hope the three were still alive and they were not abandoning the search yet. 

Local Member of Parliament, Cde Rabson Nhathi said he was also assisting in the rescue mission.

“My advice to artisanal miners is that they should consider safety first,” he said.

 

The Herald

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