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Metallon blames Redwing Mine disaster on Sakupwanya’s chaotic activities

By Staff Reporter

Metallon Corporation has confirmed that 11 miners were trapped underground at Penhalonga subsidiary, Redwing Mine while also blaming the disaster on the chaotic activities of Zanu PF Mabvuku-Tafara MP, Pedzisai Scott Sakupwanya’s Better Brands Mining Company which now controls the gold mine.

Media reports Thursday suggested some 15 artisanal miners were trapped when a mine shaft collapsed earlier in the morning.

ALSO READ: 15 ARTISANAL MINERS FEARED DEAD AFTER REDWING MINE COLLAPSE

But in a statement later in the day, Redwing Mine said 11 miners were instead trapped adding that rescue operations were underway to assist the victims.

“Redwing Mine has historically operated as a large-scale mine, utilising main shafts. When the mine was placed under corporate rescue in 2020, artisanal mining was introduced on a wide scale. This incident occurred in one of the artisanal mining pits,” said the miner.

The troubled Metallon Gold subsidiary was grabbed by Sakupwanya and his company in 2019 after some workers and creditors collaborated to apply for corporate rescue through the High Court.

The mine was later placed under corporate rescue but won an appeal through the Supreme Court.

But that did not stop the MP from annexing the mine and parcelling out tracts of land on the property to artisanal miners who burrow into earth using picks and shovels every day to pan for the precious mineral of behalf of BetterBrands.

Sakupwanya has reaped hefty profits from the condemned venture although this has come at a cost to human life.

ALSO READ: REDWING – A TALE OF PLUNDER, IMPUNITY, CHAOS AND DEATH

According to NGOs closely monitoring the situation, over 100 artisanal miners have died in the shafts since the mine seizure by Sakupwanya.

FULL STATEMENT BY METALLON CORPERATION

January 4, 2024

The following statement is attributable to Metallon Corporation, following a mining accident around the Redwing Mine claims on January 4, 2024.

Metallon Corporation regrets to advise of an accident involving artisanal miners working in small-scale mining pits in claims around Redwing Mine. The incident occurred in the early hours of Thursday, 4 January 2024. The mine’s rescue team was mobilised and immediately commenced rescue operations. Early assessments are that 11 miners are trapped.

The team has made several rescue attempts. However, the ground remains unstable, rendering rescue operations unsafe. Our teams are diligently assessing ground conditions to make sure that rescue operations proceed safely as soon as possible.

Initial assessments indicate earth tremors as a possible cause of the incident.

Redwing Mine has historically operated as a large-scale mine, utilising main shafts. When the mine was placed under corporate rescue in 2020, artisanal mining was introduced on a wide scale. This incident occurred in one of the artisanal mining pits.

The Company is actively cooperating with the relevant authorities.

Further information will be released as it becomes available.

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