At least 10 people are confirmed dead and eight injured at the black mountain collapse

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At least 10 people are confirmed dead and eight injured after the slag mountain commonly known as “black mountain” collapsed this morning in Kitwe‘s Wusakila township.

Copperbelt Province Permanent Secretary Bright Nundwe has since halted mining operations at the mountain until further notice.

Mr Nundwe who rushed to Kitwe to check on rescue operations carried out by Zambia Police Service and the Disaster Management and Mitigation Unit (DMMU) confirmed that 10 people have died while eight were injured in the accident that happened this morning around 09 30 hours.

The Ps said out of the eight injured two people are in are critical condition while the other six sustained multiple injuries and are admitted at Kitwe Teaching Hospital.

The mountain is allegedly to have collapsed due to the machinery that was excavating on top while some people were picking stones below.

Meanwhile Mr. Nundwe has ordered that operations be halted at the mountain and mobile police officers from Kafimsa be deployed to keep vigil at the black mountain.

And Copperbelt Police Commissioner Charity Katanga said the number of victims may go up as rescue operations will continue just to ensure that no one remain trapped in the slag.

Emotions flared as news of the collapsed mountain spread in the nearby Wusakila Township causing commotion and panic among residents.

This led to the deployment of security personnel from Zambia Army and reinforcement of police officers from

And PEREZ Christian Church in Ndola has called on government and other safety institutions in the country to quickly put up safety measures at the famous ‘black mountain”.

Perez Apostolic leader Alick Kapandula said government through the ministry of mines should re-exam the safety of the mountain and ascertains the prevailing situation which he described as threatening.

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65 COMMENTS

  1. Sad. Mining is a regulated venture and environment. It is not done haphazardly. Safety is number one policy in mining. Someone will now wake up to do what must be done.

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    • This is very sad news.

      These people have families and they were just trying to make ends meet.

      Where are the jobs Lungu promised?

      Zambians have suffered enough.

      Condolences to the families.

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    • GOVERNMENT IS TO BLAME BECAUSE “IN THE NAME OF EMPOWERING JERABOS THEY MADE THEM UNRULY AND ALLOWED THEM TO MINE FROM BLACK MOUNTAIN – WHEN THESE CRIMINALS HAVE NO BASIC MINING SKILLS”.
      THIS DUMP SHOULD HAVE BEEN LEFT TO THE COMPETENT PEOPLE WHO HAVE MACHINERY AND TECHNICAL KNOW HOW TO MINE AND PROCESS THE SAME.
      LAST WEEK I WATCHED A VIDEO OF MACHINE MINING AT THE TOP OF BLACK MOUNTAIN WHILE JERABOS WERE AT THE BOTTOM COLLECTING SMALL PIECES AND RUBBLE WAS FALLING AT THE SAME TIME. NO ONE COULD STOP THEM BECAUSE GOVERNMENT HAD SURRENDERED THE MOUNTAIN TO THEM.
      YOU REAP WHAT YOU SOW.

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    • “MY PEOPLE WILL PERISH BECAUSE OF LACK OF KNOWLEDGE”.
      NO ONE IS HAPPY WHEN FACED WITH DEATH, ONLY SADNESS – BUT THIS SADNESS TURNS INTO ANGER FOR US ONLOOKERS WHEN WE KNOW THAT THIS COULD HAVE BEEN PREVENTED. WHY ALLOW A GROUP OF UNSKILLED PEOPLE TO CARRYOUT A VENTURE AS DIFFICULT AND DANGEROUS AS MINING A SLAG DUMP USING HANDS AND STICKS?????

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    • Yakosa PF… Jobs created has collapsed!!
      2021 votes will be 0 to PF in Wusakile.
      PF PF slow thinkers.

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    • This is what happens when you want to please theives the urgly truth eventually comes out.
      Empowering youths to their deaths!
      Lungu miscalculated on this one handing over property that belonged to a ligitimate
      Company was a mistake.
      Zambia was once a beautiful country where did we go wrong?
      We now have crooks and thieves everywhere.

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    • And not only wake up, but also arrested for negligence. The Govt. has a duty of care to its Citizens. They are a signatory to ILO Conventions and Recommendations. But why keep a blind eye to such hazardous activities that are taking place right on the road side. One will be held responsible to International Law on Occupational Health and Safety. I was shocked to watch a clip being played at an International Health and Safety Exhibition this morning at the(Health & Safety EXPO 2018) Excel Arena in London. Only see it was my Zambia Black mountain. ECZ,EIZ,Mine Safety where are you? Advise the people in authority who have the powers to stop this Jerabo business before we lose more of our brothers.

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    • Look at the dingbat telling people to wake up…did we not tell you the so called smart people of the Zambian enterprise??

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    • When you try to set up a small business, the local council makes inspections to ensure your premises are in line with health and safety regulation. My question is when GRZ decide to “gift” this thing to unskilled people, did they ask the jerabos to meet the same safety conditions that they would ask a normal mining company to fulfill? These are consequences of populist ideas

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    • The exploitation of the black mountain started as an illegal activity by the Jerabo’s who impressed upon PF leadership in government to hand over the mountain and to formalize operations. The underlying pay off was political gains for the PF but oblivious to both sides was looming danger by not addressing safety measures and equipment in place for salvaging whatever of value the mountain offers! Failure to deliver on just the safety measures and equipment that the ‘Salvagers’ (for mining is not equated to salvaging) would avail should have made government not entertain the Jerabo’s demands! With this loss of life the blame lies squarely on those in government for being weaklings and unprofessional. This disaster was avoidable!

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    • The cholera out-break that killed more than 50 people this last rainy season is a very grievous parallel of this tragedy, the common denominator being political mileage clocked by PF by recklessly endangering citizens by unregulated activities.

      We need mature leaders in the drivers seat, not !mbeciles who will sacrifice people just to gain popularity.

      I doubt the current leadership has the balls to own up and resign – the stolen leadership is too sweet.

      Is this the leadership that we as Zambians deserve???????????????????????????????????

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    • Why is no-one getting arrested? Am pretty sure I read somewhere that the black mountain was safe and was under supervision of professional mine safety personnel…

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  2. This is very sad news.

    These people have families and they were just trying to make ends meet.

    Where are the jobs Lungu promised?

    Zambians have suffered enough.

    Condolences to the families.

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    • @Indigo
      PF lead by Kang’ombe were in streets of Kitwe in overralls praising Ba Edgar for creating jobs at Jerabos mountain.
      Jobs has collapsed. 2021 yakona goes PF.

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    • It’s about time families took legal action to bring an end to this laissez-faire approach towards health and safety. You can’t be paid to promote negligence, not even on your mother’s farm.

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  3. Really laughable. How can our government allow people with no engineering know-how to carry out underground mining in such a dangerous environment? Ni animal farm sure fye mwe bantu.

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  4. Someone holding a top office whom you support blindly.That heap of rubble was a death trap to start with.

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  5. These chaps are responsible for their lives. When there was a blast at Bgrimm explosion at Chambeshi which killed at least 49 people government was not responsible but BGRIMM Explosives, Zambia.The black mountain was given these Jerabos as a community gift for their empowerment but they started using underhand methods which made the mountain weak and eventually collapsed.The only thing government can do is to halt operations on the black mountain and put up measures which will prevent dangerous mining methods.Hence the Jerabos are responsible themselves for their death just like fishermen especially Bembas who get drawn in their canoes during fishing , government is not responsible their unsafe acts.Safe niwemwine.If you don’t use a condom on a hooker don’t blame the government if you…

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    • CONT’D..
      If you don’t use a condom on a hooker don’t blame the government if you contract STIs & HIV AIDS.Risk at your own risk!

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    • Did they understand the dangers involved? Unlike a man not using a condom on hooker the Jerabo’s don’t have the technical know – how in mining.

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    • Yes they did understand the dangers involved if they can take the samples for analysis at Alfred H Knight Lab to know the total copper (TCu) grade and and some other mineralogy then you expect them to know some basic risks involved. For your own information do you even know that that Jerabos have got accountants such as Dixie Kapotwe ( former Stanbic employee) who works for them?They are not that dull as you may think its just over-zealousness and “vizaisova” altitude otherwise some of them have worked in the mines so they know the riksk and dangers associated with explosives. So I maintain every person is responsible for his/her own safety.No one should identify a risk for you.

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    • That’s like letting people play with loaded guns and say they knew the danger after they get killed ?

      Simply irresponsible by GRZ.

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    • Spaka… Your comparison is off the belt. If you have a licensed gun ???? who can control how is it? Government only comes if you break the law. How you fnck your wife government doesn’t care but where you fnck if it’s a wrong hole like the anus well the law against the order of nature visits you.

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    • Spaka… Your comparison is off the belt. If you have a licensed gun ???? who can control how is it? Government only comes if you break the law. How you fnck your wife government doesn’t matter but where you fnck if it’s a wrong hole like on the butt well the law against the order of nature visits you.

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    • Spaka… Your comparison is off the belt. If you have a licensed gun who can control how to use it? Government only comes if you break the law. How you fnckk your wife government doesn’t care but where you fnckk if it’s a wrong hole like the butt well the law against the order of nature visits you.

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  6. This is the consequency of having a system that is reactive. The government before allowing operations to initiate, they should have deployed the mining and safety technocrats to institute all measures required for the mine to operate. This is the outcome of converting illegal operations into legal.

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  7. Without safety in place, this was a matter of time.
    Its likely to happen again if no serious measures are taken.

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  8. I have to agree with Sharon but I am surprised that she hasn’t blamed it on HH. I feel sorry for these people trying to survive by doing such desperate jobs. Life is hard for many families in Kitwe and these people cannot afford to lose loved ones and bread-winners. It’s time to mourn now and at an appropriate time questions will be asked. I do not see us learning our lessons if past behaviour is a guide.The govt’s Jarebo policy isn’t something I can say is good or bad policy. It’s desperate policy and when you are desperate , you have no time to double-check what you are doing.

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  9. Ironic how the same dingbats who were celebrating right here on LT in the name of empowerment today are wondering how these people were allowed to work in such an environment or worse allowed on a mining site.

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  10. The government ignored all rules and regulations and decided to take this mountain from a legitimate mining company and give it to jerabos for the sake of votes. Thats ten less votes for you now.

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  11. The jerabos put political pressure on governnent including blackmail to get the Black Mountain memorial park. And despite the disaster they will spare no effort to resune mining immediately. To them life is not important especially the big boss jerabos who are at no risk at all.
    But then, if anyone wants to carry out mining activities they need a mining licence which then sets out conditions and regulations including safety to be followed. Did the government issue a licence? Did it ensure that regulations were in place and followed?
    It was the same with the recent cholera, government was just waiting for if to hapoen because the signs were there including inaction by the authorities, when hundreds died the responsible authorities were now talking humanitarian assistance. Politicians,…

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    • Really laughable if you spent your time…reading articles and being objective you would have known that State House sped through application process for Black mountain Jerabo mining activities
      You have no shame to even state that thugs but pressure on the Head of State…if they can do that to him imagine what the corrupt elite would do.
      Wake up!!

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    • The buck stops at lungu , he was the star handing that slag heap to his enforcers , the jarebos called upon to harrasse the opposition….

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  12. Always make the right decision not a political one the result is what has happened. What ever political explanation.

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  13. A Congress of Bab00ns! It’s been interesting watching National Geographic Zambian style! Since there is no more Rule of Law in Zambia, this is Natural Selection and survival of the fittest! Bring more popcorn!

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  14. If only pf spent half the money that they spent on roads on manufacturing many of those dead would be working safe in manufacturing…..instead the PF were giving themselves tenders in what can only be described as a road tender frenzy…a frenzy to build roads so unemployed youth like the dead jarebos could be loitering on……only to be called upon to enforce PF violence on the opposition when it suited lungu…..

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  15. Where’s your Messiah now, eh!? Health and safety first people! Any fool can tell you disturbing that great heap of dirty is risky!

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  16. Due to the leadership vacuum, we are sure that there will be no consequences for this, and in a country where accountability does not exist, I can assure you that nobody will be held accountable for this. Ten young lives sent to their early graves, it will be business as usual

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    • This is what is going to happen when those EUROBOND repayments become due and we default…the PF dingbats who comment on LT like JUNIOR, Senior Citizen & Co will all be mute…its the people on the ground who will feel most…

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  17. I put blame on the government and the jerabos. Nivozifunila ivi. You reap what you sow. How do you operate on a mine without safety measures??
    Sad for those who have died. I hope a lesson will be learnt

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  18. Today its the first time I have heard upnd cadre and Sharon contribute sensibly on national issues. Whatever was in their heads.

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  19. Blaming the jaribos for this tradegy stinks……thats like GRZ letting drivers with no licences on to the roads and when people die you say they should have known the dangers …….simple dereliction of duty by GRZ…

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  20. So sad at the loss of lives .After the cholera episode this is the 2nd time poverty and political expediency have been mixed leading to preventable deaths.

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  21. So sad at the loss of lives .After the cholera episode this is the 2nd time poverty and political expediency have been mixed leading to preventable deaths.

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  22. It GRZ’s fault. How to do you allow people with no known on the issues of safety and mining to carry out mining activities? You give the black mountain to thieves ati empowering youths. Which youths? This government is weak, scared of Gerabos.

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  23. Jobs jobs jobs Lungu. I wouldn’t be surprised these are the 500,000 jobs Lungu promised to create. This is squarely on nobody but Lungu. He has always used these criminals to terrorize his opponents and gave them this dangerous illegal occupation to these struggling young men. It is sad, but it is was coming, now it has happened. What next? Who gives compensation to their families? Lungu must compensate them. These are the jobs he gave them. This is on him and he must own this tragedy. He failed to honor the social contract to create real jobs and decided to give them a dangerous mountain for a living, he must take responsibility.

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  24. These are part of the 500,000 jobs Lungu created. He must take responsibility. He allowed this to happen for political expediency. Yes, these are his funerals that he created and must accept that he messed up. He did not foresee this, but he should have put measures in place to prevent this before allowing them to mine. Those guys are not illegal miners. The President said they should mine. So, he must be responsible.

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  25. 500,000 jobs Lungu created. Laughable even when it is not the right time. Chansoni sana. Some leaders, sometimes you would think they were picked by kindergarten children. Seriously Lungu must own this tragedy. He is the one who openly said they should mine, and didn’t put safety measures as a priority or in place.

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  26. Comment:may they rest in peace, I hope the government takes over the black mountain on behalf of the remaining *****s who sent the youngs

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  27. President Lungu and his PF have blood the lost lives on their hands. He sent one of his bootlicker ministers plus Freedom Sikazwe to deliver the message of granting illigal mining licences without providing safety measures just because they are scared to lose copperbelt to the opposition. Whoever granted mining licences and whoever allowed that illigal mining should be guity over those who have lost lives. If they cannot feel guity they are worse than witches. Anyway that is special advise from Kaizer and Freedom Sikazwe the president ends up in mess that will make history of his resigme of corruption.

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  28. President Lungu is on record as he used his wisdom as republican president, the father of the nation ordered to discontinue court cases on black mountain. He facilitated grant of licence to illigal miners as a caring president and father without taking into account safety measures. He blindly as always issued those licences purely to win copperbelt vote which he fears will go to the opposition. Now is wise decision has begun to bear fruits. Well done Mr president, well done Freedom Sikazwe you went to meet Jerabos to prepare them from such terrible deaths.

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  29. @Jay Jay J, I am with you; I wanted to see what that BR Mumba Sr and his so call smart people of the Zambian enterprise would say; but he has gone into hiding; his PF is creating disaster after disaster; they created the cholera disaster; and this is one of many; including the debt disaster; Lungu should have rushed to the black Mountain; the mines minister should be forced to resign; condolences to the families;

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  30. LT; what happened to my comment? i did not insult anyone; what happened? what has happened to the so called smart people of the Zambian enterprise spoken by Br Mumba Sr? PF created this disaster without putting in safety members just like they created cholera for legalising street vending; the mines minister should resign; condolences to the affected families;

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  31. I hear the Minister of Mines is not a mining expert. His background is that of a secondary school teacher. I’m sure there are a lot of mining technocrats in his ministry who could have advised him better. We want to hear from the mining experts in the ministry. Tell us: Did you do your job? That of giving expert advice to the Minister on the Black mountain slag?

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  32. Kamwili is on record for asking government to give the black mountain to Jerabos

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