8 miners rescued in Zimbabwe; others remained trapped

8 miners rescued in Zimbabwe; others remained trapped

8 miners rescued in Zimbabwe; others remained trapped

Local Government Minister July Moyo said in a statement on Friday that the government had declared the incident a disaster and that up to 70 people could have been trapped in the pits.

Dozens are feared to have died 40m (130ft) underground since the accident happened on Tuesday night. They have laboured for 24 hours and the fatigue is showing but they are racing against time as their colleagues are trapped precariously in the waters below these shafts.

Not a single body has been retrieved yet, three days after the mine flooded, as rescuers are still trying to pump water from the shafts. The government has appealed for about $200,000 to feed the families of the missing miners and rescue workers as well as prepare funerals for those who might not make it out alive, drawing fire from the opposition MDC which says the government has its priorities wrong.

Zimbabwe is in the throes of a deep economic crisis, the worst in a decade.

Annual inflation shot to 56.90 percent up from 42.09 percent in December 2018, according to official statistics released Friday, the highest increase in a decade.

A rescued artisinal miner is carried from a pit as retrieval efforts proceed for trapped illegal gold miners in Kadoma, Zimbabwe, on February 16, 2019.

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Formal unemployment is estimated at over 90 percent and artisanal gold mining, mostly in mines long abandoned by big corporates, is widespread and provides a source of income for many.

Artisanal mining is not banned outright in Zimbabwe, although it is largely unregulated.

The country also has valuable platinum, diamond, gold, coal and copper deposits.

At least 8 miners been rescued thus far.

"So we are here now waiting for his recovery", she told AFP.

Searchers have recovered 24 bodies from a mine in Zimbabwe that was flooded after heavy rains, trapping dozens of subsistence miners underground. Meanwhile, eight miners were rescued in the morning with the first survivor said to have been rescued at around 07:10 hours.

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