A landslide at an illegal mine in northern Tanzania killed twenty-two persons on Saturday morning.
The district commissioner Simon Simalenga confirmed the incident adding that it happened at Ng’alita mine in Bariadi district, Simiyu region.
Mining activities had been restricted in the area due to heavy rain which has caused flash floods, however, some persons continued mining activities in the area.
President Samia Suluhu Hassan expressed condolences, adding that it is “great sadness”
“These fellow Tanzanians were small miners in the area, trying to earn a living for themselves, their families,” she said in a post on X, formerly known as Twitter.
Simalenga said he was initially told that there were 19 to 20 people trapped in the mines, but that 22 bodies ended up being retrieved.
Faustine Mtitu, acting commander for the region’s fire and rescue forces, said in quotes cited by AFP news agency that the search had been ended as he was “convinced that there are no more bodies trapped in the rubble.”
Simalenga said the artisanal miners commenced mining in late December before the government issued safety measures.
“The regional mining officer visited them and stopped them from mining as it was working on the required procedures” Simalenga explained.
Illegal and unregulated mining is widespread in Tanzania, a major global gold producer.