By Andrew Irumba
Untold horror and shock gripped people of in Lujinji D Village, Kitumbi Sub-County Kassanda district, after two artisanal minors were buried alive in a bit as they tried to mine gold on Saturday evening afternoon.
According to area residents the deceased, identified as Nathan Muyingo and a one Byamukama, had been carrying out illegal mining activities in the restricted mining area for some weeks.
So far the bodies have spent four days and nights in the pit and currently police officers struggling to retrieve the corpses, such that they can hand them over to relatives for proper burial.
Police said the incident was reported by the village chairperson Daniel Mukuye.
However, it should be noted that several people have perished as a result of being buried alive by gold pits.
There have been unconfirmed reports of gold mining taking place in Lujinji under the watch of the police unit which was enacted to keep law and order in the mining sector and depite the act being illegal, the locals have continued mining unabated.
However, Wamala Regional Police Spokesperson Norbert Ochom said claims of police officers abetting gold mining in restricted areas are currently being investigated.
“I cannot confirm or deny the allegations. However, investigations are underway ad if there are officers implicated will be handled as the law says,” said Ochom. He, however, insists that some miners do sneak into the restricted areas.
The vice was first reported by the manager Kisiita Mining Company Jjuuko Lukanga although the police refuted these claims.
In 2017, thousands of Artisanal and Small Scale Miners were evicted from Kassanda gold mines, on grounds that their activities were illegal and posed a security threat.
However, after a series of negotiations government resolved that AUC Mining (U) Limited, the company which owns the exploration area relinquished 30 percent of the land to the artisanal and small scale miners, which saw many of them return to the mines with their rudimentary tools.