8 people still trapped, 24 hours later, after mining shaft collapsed in Siaya

By , K24 Digital
On Fri, 3 Dec, 2021 16:26 | 2 mins read
Locals in the process of retrieving miners trapped in the shaft. PHOTO/COURTESY

Eight people are yet to be removed from debris, 24 hours after they were trapped 300 feet underground after a gold mining shaft collapsed at Abimbo area in Siaya County.

According to David Orido who is the manager of the mining site, the artisanal gold miners were on their routine mining expedition when the walls of the shaft crumbled, trapping them inside.

“The shaft crumbled after the reinforcement on its walls collapsed,” Orido noted.

Further, he revealed that the miners were ten at the time of the incident but two managed to find their way out of the shaft with minor injuries leaving behind the eight who are still trapped.

While expressing optimism at rescuing the eight, Orido said they are planning to excavate the soil blocking the entrance.

“We have already made arrangements to excavate the soil that is blocking the entrance of the shaft to enable us to rescue our colleagues," stated Orido.

Confirming the incident, Bondo Deputy County Commissioner Richard Karani said that the duo who managed to find their way out of the shaft has since been treated at a local health center and discharged.

DCC Karani noted that they are already in touch with the relevant authorities to find a way of safely rescuing the miners.

Karani similarly cautioned miners against working in unlicensed mining sites to avert such incidences.

Speaking to K24 Digital after visiting the site, Bondo Member of Parliament Gideon Ochanda has said the people only require the regulations to control the mining activities.

He said the shafts cannot be closed because they are the source of livelihood for citizens.

"They do not require a serious licensing. The process of them getting a license is beyond what they can do. Just like fishing gears there are those that are not required but because of livelihood and situation people end up engaging in illegal fishing," Ochando noted.

"In my view they should just be regulated through their Sacco's. Completely closing the shaft's is ending their lives. They must eat and that's why they engage in the mining," he added.

The process of ensuring they are removed out is still underway.