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Gbane mine explosion death toll rises to 17

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The death toll in the mine explosion at Gbane in the Talensi District of the Upper East region has risen to 17.

Community members have accused, Shaanxi Mining Company,a Chinese mining firm for the death of their relatives, saying the company deliberately engineered the blast to sabotage the small scale miners.

It will be recalled that in 2017, Former Minister for Lands and Natural Resources minister, John Peter Amewu, directed Shanxii Mining Ghana Limited to stop work following the tragic death of seven illegal miners working on their own.

The death of 35-year-old Samuel Bang, an illegal miner, appears to have remained a sore point for locals. Bang was buried alive while drilling.

The deaths of the seven illegal miners blamed on unannounced blasting by Shanxii Mining riled the locals.

So far 17 persons have been confirmed dead as scores are still on admission at the Upper East Regional hospital for inhaling toxic gas after an explosion carried out by the Chinese mining firm.

An eyewitness Clement Kojo also spoke to GBC NEWS.

The Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, Kwaku Asumah Kyeremeh, donated five thousand Cedis to the Upper Regional Hospital where victims of the explosion are receiving treatment.

The gestures follow a complaint lodged to him by the authorities at the health facility concerning shortage of oxygen.

About 37 oxygen cylinders were empty when the GBC NEWS team visited the health facility.

The Lands and Natural Resources Minister, called for calm among the local miners and Shanxii mining firm after touring the explosion site.

What the Police is yet to ascertain is which concession blast resulted in the generation of the poisonous gas.

Meanwhile, the Deputy PRO, of the Upper East Regional Police Command, Bognaab Ebenezer, said that the Shaanxi Mining Company blast every night at 10:00pm which is known to the community and all other miners in the area.

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