RWAMAGANA - Local leaders in Rwamagana District have raised concerns about the rising number of people involved in illegal mining activities in Musha and Mwurile sites.
The concern comes not long after two German nationals, owners of Rwanda Mineral Mining Sarl, which won mining concessions, exchanged blows over mining rights.
Cassiterite and Coltan are the main minerals in the area.
Jean Claude Cyuma, the vice Mayor in charge of Economic Affairs, appealed to the line ministry to intervene, accusing the mining company of failing to control its mining activities.
“The haphazard way of mining has led to misery, instead of wealth for the two sectors and the district. People have even died after being trapped in the mines…and sectors don’t benefit from the minerals,” Cyuma, told The New Times Wednesday.
Recently, three young men died after being trapped in a mine.
Darius Kayobera, the Musha Sector Executive Secretary, accused the companies which won mining concessions of engaging in poor methods of mining which he said has led to environmental degradation in the area.
He stressed that the companies involved in the mining are to blame for illegal miners who have often fought each other.
“Look at how the hills have been dug and left bear…people have even abandoned agricultural activities to follow the little money they get from illegal mining. Yet we get only Rwf30,000 per year, as revenue from the minerals,” he said.