GOVERNMENT TO WORK 24/7 UNTIL THE PERSONS TRAPPED ARE RETRIEVED – MATAMBO
December 3rd, 2023
CHINGOLA – Copperbelt Provincial Minister Elisha Matambo says government will work round the clock to search for bodies trapped at the three sites at Seseli Open pit in Chingola.
Speaking during the press briefing held in Chingola, this evening, Mr Matambo says government is concerned and sympathises with the families whose relatives were reportedly missing and added that so far no one has been declared dead because there is no single body that has been retrieved.
“We want to assure the nation that government has mobilized all equipment needed to search for bodies believed to be trapped in the pit. So far Five excavators are on the ground trying to secure the holes were the persons are believed to be , a front loader and enough man power ready secure the holes. So far we have managed to pump out water then take out the mud before the search commences.” said Mr Matambo
He said currently, there is a team from the Provincial Joint Operation Command, PJOC, District Joint operation Command, DJOC, KCM , Mopani, Nchanga mines rescue teams creating a buffer of enough personnel currently camping to monitor the search for the persons trapped in the pit.
He remains optimistic that the team will make breakthroughs atleast by tomorrow on the status of the persons trapped in the pit and added that President Hakainde Hichilema is in constant touch through the secretariat of ministers that has been created for the rescue mission.
And Mines and Mineral Development Minister Paul Kabuswe has expressed disappointment at insensitive utterances from made the opposition towards the accident at a time when families missing their relatives.
“An open pit is a very delicate area and as a result precaution needs to be taken to prevent an accident within an accident, we seem to be taking time because we have to be careful and professional as we conduct a search and to protect everyone working in the pit. So far we met 25 families that have reported missing persons.We have 16 persons missing from Chingola , 2 persons missing from Kitwe, 6 persons from Luanshya and one from Chililabombwe.” said Mr Kabuswe.
He said government and the rescue team was in constant touch with families and is happy that all systems are at work to secure the missing persons.
Mr Kabuswe appealed to the media to get in touch with the secretariat to avoid speculations and also be sensitive in their reporting because this is a sensitive matter.
(C) THE FALCON