Federation of Small-Scale Miners backs govt over closure of Seseli mine in Chingola


Government has been applauded for stopping activities at Seseli mine in Chingola, which has been described by the Federation of Small-Scale Mining Associations (FSSMAZ) as a death trap.

Its president, Joseph Mwansa, said that government’s decision to halt mining operations at Seseli was commendable.

In December, 2023, the government halted mining operations at Seseli mine in Chingola, where over 30 illegal miners were feared dead after being buried alive.

Read more: Crack in small scale miners body? Federation warns of impostors masquerading as representatives

In an interview in Lusaka on Tuesday, Mwansa explained that there was a likelihood of further deaths arising from unsafe mining activities if mining had been allowed to continue.

“During the rainy season, it is a challenge for those working in the tunnels of the mines because rain water weakens the soils and stone structures. Therefore, it is not safe to carry out mining activities in that environment and context.

“Let us learn to appreciate any good decisions that are made. It is the best decision that the government have made regardless of the unemployment levels in our country. Life is more precious,” Mwansa said.

He stressed that it was better to close the mine than allowing it to continue working when it was a well-known fact that at the moment, it was dangerous and unsafe.

“We would like to clearly state the reasons why we have welcomed the move by the government to close the Seseli mine in Chingola. We have critically analysed all areas and angles as to the reasons and causes why the Government has closed the mine. It is not an easy and simple decision, but the government had to do it.

“We have been on site at Seseli mine and those who have visited the place they know what we are talking about. The month of April or thereafter maybe be good for them to start work again,” Mwansa said.

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