KASEMPA RESIDENTS SUE CHINESE MINE OVER SAFETY CONCERNS
By CHIKUMBI KATEBE SOME Kasempa residents in Northwestern Province have accused a Chinese Mine in the area of failing to secure their lives and property in view of blasting activities taking place underground.
This is contained in a statement of claim filed before the Lusaka High Court were eight residents have sued Ruida In- vestment Limited for carrying out blasting activities underground which have caused damage to houses and crop fields.
Idos Mulenga and seven others all of Shibamba village in Jifumpa Kasempa have accused the mining activities of damaging their houses and depriving residents of the enjoyment of the land they have lived all their lives.
He said the families were even scared of using pit latrines which have become death traps as some have collapsed owing to the blasting.
“Sometime in October 2016 the Ruida Investment began to carry out blasting activities underground the mine at Jifumpa Mine.
“That by reason of blasting, the villages got affected through blasting noise and tremors and or vibrations and caused some houses to crack and most if the pit latrines either cracked or collapsed altogether,” Mr Mulenga said.
He said despite efforts to engage the mine over the damage, the noise and blasting activities have worsened and that he mine has since sent its agents to place beacons to indicate which parts of the village was within the mine area.
This has angered the residents who have been living in the areas for generations only to be informed they have encroached on the investors’slands.
They have since asked the High Court to restrain the Mines from continued blasting activities which could lead to loss of property and even life.
“That unless the defendant is restrained by an order of injunction the blasting will continue and lives may be lost as houses may equally begin to collapse like pit latrines have done,” he said.
They have since demanded loss and damage of structural buildings of individual houses which have cracked, and latrines which in some instances have collapsed, as well as loss and damage to the land they have lived and worked for generations.
They have asked the court to compensate them for the nuisance, by the noise from blasting and vibrations, and that they be resettled at a safer piece of land by building houses and latrines as well as natural reinforcement of the forest.
Lusaka High Court