What can we do but wait - Lily Mine victim's dad

2016-02-18 11:32
Lily Mine (File, AFP)

Lily Mine (File, AFP)

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Johannesburg – The father of one of the women trapped underground at Lily Mine in Barberton says he understands the mine management's decision to suspend rescue efforts.

"We can't fault them. They have done all they can to rescue my child," Almond Mnisi told News24.

"It's tough because one day we hear good news but the next day it's bad news. We have been dealing with a lot as a family but the mine is also trying to help."

Mnisi said the family was preparing to have a traditional ceremony to ask the ancestors to help their daughter Yvonne who has been trapped at Lily Mine for 13 days.

"We are going to follow our cultural beliefs. The family will have a ceremony for the ancestors because we believe they can help," he said.

Mnisi said the mine, government officials and the union Amcu had been in constant communication with the three families.

"They come to us with updates and they have apologised for the delay. What can we do but wait," he said.

On Wednesday, Mineral Resources Minister Mosebenzi Zwane announced that rescue efforts had been suspended for a further three weeks where Yvonne, Pretty Nkambule and Solomon Nyerende are still trapped.

Zwane said after discussions with rock engineering experts who had assessed the situation at the mine, it was suggested that a mine rescue drill similar to one that had been used to rescue Chilean miners in 2010 was needed.

The drill was expected to arrive on Thursday. It was capable of drilling a 600mm diameter hole, which would reach the mine's fifth level, Zwane said.

The three mine workers were working in a container when parts of the mine near Barberton fell into a sinkhole.

Read more on:    mbombela  |  mining  |  lily mine collapse

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