Video: Illegal miners invade Shanxi mining company’s underground tunnels

Managers
of Shanxi Mining Company have expressed worry about defiant illegal
miners who are invading their underground tunnels days after the lifting
of an embargo on the operations of the mining firm.

Shanxi, which is a service provider to two small-scale mining firms, Yenyeya and Pubortaaba mining groups, has made a passionate appeal to the Lands and Natural Resources Minister and the government, to intervene by taking practical and urgent steps to end the invasion of its underground tunnels.

The Company said two pits that were sealed by the inspectorate division of the Minerals Commission last year in the heat of investigations into the deadly underground mine blast there, have unlawfully been opened by the illegal miners who, have found safe haven on its concession. 

Though some arrests have been made and suspects taken to the police, they want the central government to step in and take stiffer action against the perpetrators of the illegality.

The
mining companies were in the news last year following an underground
mine blast on their concession that killed 16 miners and left others
injured.

Government at the time, moved in swiftly and placed an embargo on their operations. The ban was subsequently followed by investigations into the deadly blast.

The companies were slapped with some fines and given specific recommendations to be taken within a given period; which included the appointment of a mine manager, and sounding of warning alarm each time the company was to undertake a blast. 

Even with those recommendations given, Yenyeya and Pubortaaba were not given the permission to go back to mine, but the ban was lifted on January 13.

But, less than two weeks into resumption, the illegal miners, according to Pubortaaba and Yenyeya mining companies, have also returned. 

The development they say is taking a toll on their operations and want authorities to act by putting an end to the impunity.

The Lands and Natural Resources Minister, Kweku Asumah Kyeremeh, after touring operational areas of the company expressed confidence in the current set up of the companies adding, he had no doubts that the reinstated company will apply high safety standards in its operations to prevent any future accident.

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