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Illegal mining site collapses in Akwa Ibom, two people killed, three injured



An illegal mining site in Buya community in Obanliku LGA of Cross River collapsed on Wednesday, killing two people and injuring three others.

The suspected illegal miners met their Waterloo after a well they dug for mining activities collapsed on them.

Effiom-Ekaha Otu, the state commissioner for mineral resources, who confirmed the incident, described it as “unfortunate and avoidable”.

He warned the youths in the state against unwarranted dangerous ventures capable of threatening their lives, adding, that an investigation would be carried out to ascertain the legality of the mining activities and the cause of the death of the victims.

A source, who pleaded anonymity, said the death was as a result of suffocation under the collapsed well.

He said some illegal miners were in the community where a rare mineral known as “tourmaline” was discovered.

The source said the youths were engaged for four months and were paid about N600,000 to dig and bring out the mineral.

Emmanuel Ashanga, a witness, said the loud sound of the collapse drew the attention of residents to the incident.

Ashanga also confirmed that three people were rescued, while two people were already dead.

“We were just relaxing under a shade when suddenly we heard a big sound like an earthquake,” Ashanga said.

“We ran towards the scene and saw some women crying for help and shouting that some people have been trapped in the well.

“We asked what happened, and they told us that they just saw the well collapse on the diggers.

“We called some other youths and we moved in and only rescued three persons, while two were already dead inside.”

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