30 trapped in Niger mine collapse

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One person has been confirmed dead, six said to have been seriously injured and 30 others reportedly trapped when a mine collapsed at Galkogo village in Shiroro Local Government Area of Niger State.

The mine site is said to belong to African Minerals and Logistics Limited, whose manager, Alhaji Ibrahim Ishaku, was reportedly trapped in the pit.

The state Emergency Management Agency (NSEMA), which confirmed the incident, said the mine collapsed on Monday, following heavy rains.

NSEMA said those who attempted to rescue the trapped miners ran back as the soil kept caving in, making it difficult for anyone to enter the pit.

The agency said rescuers managed to rescue six miners with severe injuries.

Its Director General, Alhaji Abdullahi Baba Arah, explained that due to the prevalence of banditry in the area, it was not easy to get adequate information, including rescue operations, on the incident.

He said excavators had been deployed in the area for the rescue operations.

Also, the Federal Government has said it had mobilised first responders to the collapsed mining site.

A statement by Segun Tomori, the media aide to the Minister of Solid Minerals Development, Dr. Dele Alake, yesterday in Abuja, reads: “Upon learning of the incident, we mobilised our Federal Mines Officer (FMO) and officials of the Mines Inspectorate to the site. In collaboration with the mining company, we have rescued seven victims, some with injuries. Rescue operations with excavators are ongoing to ensure we avert loss of lives.”

Alake recently announced a policy, making remedial measures for mining pits mandatory as part of the criteria for applying for mining licences.

This aims to minimise such accidents.

The Nation

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