Illegal miners die in mine collapse at Vubachikwe

mine accident
Two illegal gold miners died at Vubachikwe Mine in Gwanda when the shaft they were working in collapsed.
The mine has been closed for a year after a strike by mine workers over salaries.
The deceased have been identified as Nqobile Phiri from Esigodini and Thamsanqa Moyo from Gwanda.
The incident happened yesterday morning when the gold panners swarmed the area after reports that gold had been discovered in September.
When arrived at the scene in the morning, heavy policepresence was witnessed at the shaft as they battled to ward off panners from entering the tunnel.
Matabeleland South provincial police spokesperson Inspector Loveness Mangena confirmed the incident, saying the mine caved in just after 12 midnight.
“There were other two panners who were doing illegal panning, Bhekimpilo Ndebele (32) and Alex Mvendele (40) who heard the sound of people screaming for help inside a shaft. One of them was also trapped but survived and was referred to Gwanda Provincial Hospital for treatment.
“The bodies of the two miners were retrieved at 7am from the mine shaft and they are at Gwanda Provincial Hospital mortuary awaiting a post-modern,” she said
A panner who identified himself as Mr Ntandoyenkosi Nyathi said he was also working in the shaft with the deceased when the accident took place.
Mr Nyathi said a big rock fell and the shaft collapsed.
“I saw a big rock falling from above and it hit the two guys who were carrying the ore. A lot of people who were in the shaft ran away. One of the deceased told me to that he was dying and I should help him.
“I then told him that the stone was too heavy and I could not lift it by myself. I went to look for help and when Icame back he was already dead,” he said.
Insp Mangena urged members of the public to desist from gold panning as they risk their lives. Sunday News
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