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House crumbles in Kwekwe

by Staff reporter
03 Jun 2023 at 08:15hrs | Views
A Kwekwe family escaped death by a whisker after their flat at Globe and Phoenix compound caved in due to illegal mining underneath the compound.

Family spokesperson, Ms Kimberly Rusike, said the most affected areas of the house were the kitchen and lounge, whose floors caved in following a huge blast by illegal miners on Thursday night.

She said residents of the compound were now living in fear as illegal miners caused havoc around Globe and Phoenix compound, which forms part of Kwekwe city centre.

"When we woke up to check the house following a huge sound from a blast that had occurred underground, we realised that the whole kitchen and lounge had caved in and that there was a huge opening underneath the house," said Ms Rusike.

"The house has since been decommissioned and I am now homeless."

Ms Rusike said there were over 200 people housed at the compound, who all risked losing their properties as the ground where their flat stood had been damaged.

Mr Aaron Madiro, who lives in the compound, said over 100 families lived on the compound, which was no longer a safe place.

"Every other day, we hear blasts and detonations from underground as illegal miners go about their business and it is only a matter of time before this whole compound is decommissioned," he said. "We are on the verge of losing our properties."

Midlands Provincial Affairs and Devolution Minister, Larry Mavima, together with the provincial Civil Protection Unit team, yesterday visited the affected family.

Minister Mavima condemned the illegal mining occurring around the compound, and said the Government was moving in to close all the mines within Kwekwe city centre as fears continued to grow that the entire town could be in danger of crumbling due to ongoing illegal mining activities underneath.

He said Kwekwe was under siege from rampant illegal mining.

"The level of destruction is very worrisome," said Minister Mavima. "Even if people want money, they should look for legal and better ways of making money. We have a serious situation in this town that has not only affected these Globe and Phoenix houses, but the city at large."

Earlier this year, about 16 learners at Globe and Phoenix Primary School were injured after a classroom block caved in during a lesson.

Some learners and furniture had to be retrieved from a tunnel following the freak accident.

The school was subsequently abandoned, with the Government launching an investigation on a geological report of the entire area.

The Department of Civil Protection has also condemned a Government complex within the same Globe and Phoenix vicinity and ordered that it should be vacated urgently.

The complex houses the District Development Coordinator's office, Ministry of Information Office, District Development Fund office, Registry, Civil Court and offices for other departments.

Minister Mavima said while the Joint Operation Command (JOC) was in the process of compiling a report, if the rampant illegal mining activities continue, the Government would be left with no option but to close the formal mines in the area.

"The future is uncertain for the people in this area, hence the report will clearly show the impact of the mining here and the only option will be to close down the mines," said Minister Mavima.

Source - The Herald