News24

More bodies found in Ghana

2010-07-01 22:52

Accra - Rescuers in Ghana Thursday pulled out 13 more bodies from a clandestine gold mine which caved in after heavy rains and killed at least 32 people in the west African country's south.

They have been pumping out water from the flooded pit to reach the miners who were buried on Sunday after a downpour.

"We believe that there are more dead bodies in there, so the rescue operation will continue," Helen Ntoso, National Disaster Management Organisation (NADMO) chief, told AFP by phone.

Police have detained the owner of the mine along with two other people.

Sunday's disaster is the second of its kind in gold-rich Ghana in less than a year.

Last November at least 18 people, including 14 women, were killed in one of Ghana's worst mining disasters. A similar number died in another cave-in in April 2007 at a mine west of the capital Accra.

Many of the west African country's illegal gold-mining pits are exploited by so-called "galamsey" -- farmers evicted to make way for large-scale mining operations, or former miners who lost their jobs to machinery.

Ghana is the second-largest gold producer in Africa and the yellow metal accounts for more than 90 percent of its mineral exports.