Gifurwe Wolfram Miners in Burera District, over the weekend, celebrated the socio-economic impact of mining as part of the celebrations to mark the World Mining Day celebrated on December 4, internationally.
Over 800 miners including 35 women working in Gifurwe Wolfram Mining testified how the industry had transformed their lives.
The Director General of Wolfram Mining and Processing Company, Jean Marie Kalima, explained that the relevance of the celebrations was to increase productivity and add value to the mining sector.
“We are targeting production of 25 tonnes next year. This sector benefits the area residents in terms of jobs, they have health insurance, we have even bought an ambulance,’’ Kalima said.
The best miner, Juvenal Rwabigwi, went home with a trophy and a cash prize of an undisclosed amount for his commitment and demonstrable team spirit, as a leader of 70 miners.
At the same occasion, seven people trained by Red Cross Rwanda in first aid particularly in the basics of treatment were awarded with certificates.
Thirty two female miners were also rewarded for exhibiting courage to work in the mining sector.
The Director of Mining in the Ministry of Natural Resources, Fidele Uwizeye, said that all mining companies are now required to carry out a feasibility study and indicate the amount of reserves to eventually facilitate national planning.
He said the government would introduce a royalty tax on minerals to be levied according to production levels.
The District Mayor, Samuel Sembagari, commended the mining firm for keeping the environment clean and averting conflicts with residents. He also urged the miners to develop a savings culture.
Burera District has four mining sites including Gifurwe, Kagogo, Bugarama and Gatumba for wolfram and casitilite, are mined.