Mine management ignored information on crack on dam wall in Jagersfontein: Workers

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Mineworkers who worked the night shift ahead of the Jagersfontein mine disaster claim they informed mine management of a crack on the mine dam wall. Workers have told National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) representatives that mine management had allegedly ignored the warnings.

One person was killed and two are still missing after the mine sludge dam burst almost two weeks ago. At least 164 houses were damaged. The NUM’s national health and safety secretary Masibulele Naki says they also need answers from Department of Labour inspectors.

“They were supposed to take out the sand so that the dam itself becomes strong. Because you can’t close mud with sand. At a particular point even when its raining, these workers are telling us that the wall is coming down, they were always indicating such things. There are lot of hazards and risk that were not taken care of by the mine bosses, what they care for is profit,” says Naki.

The family of the 78 year-old Ralehana Mosoeu in Jagersfontein in the Free State say they yet to recover from their loss. Mosoeu was confirmed dead after a mine sludge dam burst in the Free State town.

The sludge flooded the town causing massive damage to infrastructure and houses. Mosoeu was a retired teacher. At the time of his death, Mosoeu was concentrating on a commonage or common piece of pastoral land that he started almost nine years ago.

His younger brother Tankiso Mosoeu said, “We really found ourselves one by one breaking down and devastated.”

Video | The bigger picture of the Jagersfontein mine dam tragedy: