Illegal mining kills 3, injures dozens in Ghana

11:13, May 07, 2011      

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ACCRA, May 6 (Xinhua) -- Three illegal gold miners died in an explosion at a mine site at Kenyase in Ghana's central Bono Ahafo region, about 400 km north of the capital Accra, a local source told Xinhua on Friday.

An electric plant which was used by the illegal miners developed a fault at dawn and caught fire which ignited explosives at the site, killing the three instantly and leaving dozens of others with various degrees of injury.

Familes of the injured rushed to the scene to take them to a nearby hospital for treatment.

Local reports said a number of young Ghanaians had previously died in illegal mining activities in abandoned mine shafts, which mostly caved in on them, burying them alive.

Illegal miners, who usually ply their trade at night to avoid arrests, say economic hardship drives them into such hazardous enterprise.

Kwabena Ansah, a 25-year-old illegal miner in the Kenyase area, told Xinhua on telephone, "We don't get work to do here and we are hungry so we have to go and mine the small gold that we can get in the old mines. On good times we get about 200 cedis (134 U. S. dollars) or even 500 cedis (335 dollars) a week from the gold."

Source: Xinhua

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