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Hwange commemorates disaster which killed 427 miners

04/06/2017 00:00:00
by Business Reporter
Hwange Colliery corporate affairs manager Rugare Dhobbie

WIDOWS of the 1972 Kamandama Miner Disaster victims are expected to attend this year’s commemorative events which start with a golf tournament Monday at Hwange Golf Club, company officials have revealed.

The Kamandama Memorial Fundraising Golf Tournament, part of a two-day programme - is expected to raise at least $20,000 from this year’s edition.

“The tragic event has ushered in a new and better approach to safety management in the mining sector,” said Hwange Colliery corporate affairs manager Rugare Dhobbie.

“As a result, the mining industry has made great strides in the area of safety since that fateful day.

The 1972 disaster left more 427 miners dead after an explosion at coal miner. The workers died after a methane gas blast ripped through a shaft trapping them inside.

The explosion remains the country’s worst mine disaster. Over a third of those who perished were neighbouring countries such as Malawi, Namibia, Mozambique and Botswana

In a statement, Dhobbie said the main commemorations are to be held on Tuesday the 6th of June.

“This year will be the 45th anniversary of the disaster and, as is the norm, the event will be graced by chiefs, widows, customers and suppliers.

“The commemorations are an annual event held at the site of the blast, which was turned into a monument in remembrance of those who lost their lives.

The main event will be preceded by a fundraising golf tournament Monday with some 120 golfers expected to participate. Proceeds from the tournament will go towards the welfare of the surviving widows and their families.

Dhobbie also said the disaster heightened safety consciousness at Hwange Colliery and the mining industry in general, adding that it should continue to be a lesson for the future.

“History is important as it informs future behaviour,” she said.

Meanwhile, golfers from South Africa, Zambia and Botswana contest the Monday tournament.

“We are finalising the preparations for the commemorations and this year’s target is to raise $20,000,” said Dhobbie.


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