WORRIES THAT STREET KIDS MAY BE AMONG THOSE TRAPPED IN THE CHINGOLA MINE DISASTER
By Michael Kaluba
Beautiful Gates Foundation Executive Director Bill Kapinga is concerned that some street kids may be part of the trapped miners in Chingola after being recruited into illegal mining activities by some known influential persons.
Some people, believed to be about 40 in number, have been trapped at the Sesili Open-Cast Mine in Chingola over the last week, with only one miner pulled alive from under a mudslide five days after being trapped underground with two other unidentified bodies also retrieved.
Mr Kapinga also says that determining the total number of people buried in the tunnels will be difficult because those running the operations do not have ledgers, while street kids are illegally recruited and used at the mine without being accounted for.
He has encouraged the government to ensure that, while efforts to rescue the trapped miners are sustained, the state also institutes a thorough and systematic investigation on this illegality perpetrated by a cartel of politically exposed persons over the years.
Mr Kapinga believes that those seen posing as small-scale miners are fronts for the masterminds of illegal mining activities across the Copperbelt, who should be held accountable for their role in endangering the lives of the affected people.