A mine workers representative union has called on government to introduce a mine inspection programme to assess the safety of workers and guard against major mining accidents.
Speaking to Great Dyke News 24 Zimbabwe Diamond and Allied Minerals Workers Union Secretary Justice Chinhema said stakeholders need to take part in the said inspection.
He called on miners to prioritize safety and not allow employees to work in dangerous workplaces.
‘’The rainy season is drawing closer, l fear for the miners because they will not be safe. During this time of the year, the past rainy season we witnessed many accidents. Many workers lost their lives.’’
“We advise all the miners this coming rainy season not to be forced to work when it is not safe, when it is raining and when the mine is not inspected. As the Union, we suggested that the government must do a mine safety inspection programme that involves the Ministry of Mines and Mining Development, NSSA and all trade unions so as to check if all the operating mines are safe’’, he said.
He also noted that some mines have been compromised by the activities of illegal miners and have to work on improving safety standards.
‘’In these past months things were tough, people were mining in disused mines. These mines are no longer safe, the pillars that hold the mines were destroyed by illegal miners. As it will be the rainy this season the ground will be wet and soaked.
‘We also want to advice the government that this is the time we must formalize small scale and artisanal mining so that we know their activities on a daily basis, we cannot continue to have accidents in disused mines’’, he added.