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DMR permanently closes mine shafts

By on March 5, 2022 0

A team from the Department of Minerals and Resources (DMR) recently visited Benoni to establish an action plan that could see the permanent closure of mine shafts associated with illegal mining operations.

Guided by members of the Public Order Police from Benoni Police Station, Sector Leaders and Lt. Col. Mark Naidoo (Visible Police Operational Commander for Ekurhuleni District), who are familiar with the activities illegal mining in the area, the team could also take 3D as GPS surveys to determine the locations and intricate flow of existing mine shafts and ventilation tunnels.

“They scanned 18 shafts and tunnels from Mackenzie Park to Golden Drive,” said station spokesperson Capt Nomsa Sekele.

“The plan is to see if it would be sustainable to backfill the holes and then seal them with concrete.”

According to Sekele, they were unable to visit Shaft 13, Van Rhyn, where police and miners clashed on February 24 because the area is secured by zama-zama snipers.

“Illegal miners are setting traps to try to prevent police operations from entering the area,” she said.

“Despite this, our operations continue and are proving successful.

“We hope that any initiative undertaken by the DMR will hinder and even eradicate their activities.”

It is estimated that a single well will cost almost R4 million to fill.

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