12 Trapped In Galamsey Pit

Rescue efforts at the scene of the tragic incident

More than 12 people working as illegal miners in a gold mining pit at Akrokerri in the Adansi North District of the Ashanti Region are believed to have been trapped after the pit caved in.

The victims, who are mostly residents of the community, are feared to be dead after their entrapment on Wednesday evening.

The incident has sent shockwaves to the town and its surrounding communities, with people searching for their missing relatives after rescue efforts recovered one body from the pit.

The body was identified as that of one Stephen Abu, aka Nkasie, who is said to be the ring leader of the galamsey operators.

He was among 15 workers said to have been engaged by the Assembly member of the area, Edmond Tando, and another unnamed person, to prospect for gold in the mining pit near an abandoned KVIP latrine.

The so-called prospecting is being done right in the middle of the town.

Unconfirmed reports say the Assembly man and some others, while working to renovate the KVIP latrine about three months ago, discovered gold deposits around the area and, therefore, began to mine them.

DAILY GUIDE was told some of the illegal miners, popularly known as ‘galamsey’ operators, who managed to escape, raised the alarm.

The Obuasi Municipal Police Commander, DSP Martin Assenso, said the police could not readily tell the number of persons trapped underground.

According to him, the police and other stakeholders were working to know the exact number of people missing, indicating that the district assembly had engaged people to assist the rescue team to recover the bodies.

He added that rescue efforts were still ongoing as the police assumed there could be some of the victims still alive.

From Ernest Kofi Adu, Kumasi