Negligence is cause of Miner’s death- CoI report


The Committee of Inquiry (CoI) report into recent mining pit collapse at Konawaruk, Mahdia, Potaro mining district #2 which led to the death of Miner Reynold Williams has revealed that negligence was the principle cause of the incident.


The report completed by Major General (ret’d) Joe Singh, was today handed over to Minister of Natural Resources, Raphel Trotman.


“The report’s findings highlight a worrying trend of negligence and recklessness that is being replicated among other medium and small scale mining operations and the grave risks these present to the lives of miners working on properties where safe mining practices are not being adhered to” a statement from the Ministry said.


Among worrying trends mentioned are; lack of contingency plans for safety and rescue, poorly trained personnel and lack of basic supplies to respond to injuries.


It noted that these unsafe practices, which have a ripple effect on families, communities, the sector and the country as a whole and can no longer be condoned at any level, and recommends that measures be put in place immediately to curb these actions.


Minister Trotman noted that he receives the report with a heavy heart since its findings glaringly expose the magnitude and depth of work to be done to bring the mining sector back into good repute, starting with the awareness among current miners about the basics of mining.


He highlighted the need for stricter enforcement of existing laws, the use of drone technology along with training and stricter conditions for the issuance of permits need to be incorporated.


Considering the findings of committees of inquiries conducted over the past year, the Government of Guyana through the Ministry of Natural Resources has adopted a zero tolerance approach to unsafe mining practices and will shortly be putting measures in place to hold property owners accountable for actions perpetrated on their properties, the Ministry said.


The ministry said consultations with stakeholders will commence soon.


18 year old Williams lost his life on May 29, 2016 when the mining pit collapsed at Konawaruk, Mahdia, Potaro.


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