By Jomo Paul
[www.inewsguyana.com] – President of the Guyana Gold and Diamond Miners Association (GGDMA) Patrick Harding has confirmed that only nine out of ten bodies have been recovered from Sunday’s tragic mining pit cave-in at Mowasi Backdam, Potaro River.
The incident saw seventeen miners being buried under a pile of dirt and rubble but seven of those miners made it out alive with varying degrees of injuries. The others remained trapped under the dirt where they eventually perished.
The ten trapped miners have been identified as Leyland Jones, Jason Trotman 21 of Samatta Point, Grove Housing Scheme; Vick Bernard, Frank Bernard, Desmond Martins, Raymond August, Brian Bank, Trevon Phillips, Nanmore Kurt and ‘Michael’.
Mining experts have explained that after their preliminary investigation, it was concluded that the heavy rains in the area, improper mining design and poor safety practices were among the causes for the accident.
When contacted on Thursday, May 21, the GGDMA President opined that the entire tragedy may have been avoided had the miners adhered to the mining regulations.
“I expect them to mine according to the regulations…we would also call on our miners to adhere to the regulations, I think the welfare of the workers should come first,” said Harding.
He said that while the Guyana Geology and Mines Commission (GGMC) has the responsibility of ensuring that regulations are adhered to, there must be more regard for human life on the part of the operators.
“The Association would call on the mining industry to get its act together…they should put their operations in order so we won’t have this tragedy again, one life is important much more ten,” said Harding.