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BY CORRESPONDENT,MIGORI,10TH MAY 2018-Six bodies of the gold miners who were buried alive in Migori County have been retrieved.
This ends any hope of finding anyone of the alive as family members had hoped.The bodies were all retrieved on Wednesday night after a 24-hour search was mounted since the tragedy occurred.
The victims were trapped on Tuesday night after a tunnel caved in following heavy rains.
The victims were identified as Michael Otieno, David Ochieng, Isaya Ooko, Joseph Otieno, Pascal Omondi and Ochieng Mwalimu.
Migori Governor Okoth Obado supervised the evacuation process which was undertaken by Excavator .
It ended that ended on Wednesday at 8pm.
Rescue efforts were delayed for more than 15 hours as county officials searched for an excavator.
Bodies of the victims, were taken to the Migori County Referral Hospital mortuary, awaiting burial.
Governor Obado admitted that the county’s earth movers had been grounded, forcing them to hire the one which was deployed at the scene late.
“As a county government, we still face a lot of challenges in our disaster preparedness and we need support from the national government. Since mining is not a devolved function, we want the government to introduce safe mining methods so that we avert deaths of our people in this region,” he said.
Nyatike MP Tom Odege said in a statement that the rescue mission was very slow and badly organised.
“The government had been very slow to send rescue teams on the ground thus dimming our hopes to find the miners alive. We want the national government to urgently establish the proposed Disaster Management Authority,” he said.
Lack of modern equipment for miners has been cited as the major challenge facing most of the miners in Migori since most of them use crude tools and therefore endangeringtheir lives.
Even as tragedies continue to stalk them ,they still say that they will continue to carry on their mining activities since they have no any other means of earning a decent income. ”We have no any other means of making ends meet,the government need to come in and even provide safe modern equipment for miners”,said Frank Ogolla a miner in Nyatike.