NANCY SIAME, Lusaka
POLICE have deployed 50 more officers from Kamfinsa Mobile Unit to Konkola Copper Mines (KCM) in Chingola to enhance security owing to the recent invasions of the mine by illegal miners, commonly known as jerabos, who are causing terror at the mining firm.
This brings the total number of officers deployed at KCM to 100 to secure the facility to ensure workers execute their duties freely.
Deputy Inspector-General of Police Malcolm Mulenga disclosed this after checking the security situation last week at KCM, where it was discovered that criminals cut off a 200m 11 kilovolts electric cable, resulting in power outage for four days and suspension of operations at Nchanga Underground Mine.
This is according to a statement issued yesterday by police spokesperson Esther Katongo.
“I have seen for myself that this is purely an act of sabotage aimed at disrupting operations at the mine. People should realise that such acts have the potential to place lives of employees at risk, especially those working underground, as well as residents,” he said.
Mr Mulenga warned that police will not condone lawlessness perpetrated by criminal elements bent on causing terror through acts of sabotage and theft.
He said police are on high alert and all those found wanting will not be spared.
“Police are determined to see to it that law and order prevails in Chingola, KCM in particular. We shall not leave anything to chance,” he said.
He urged youths not to engage in criminal acts with claims that there is no employment.
Mr Mulenga expressed hope that with heightened police presence, security will be restored at the mine as Government is losing a lot of revenue through illegal mining activities.
And Minister of Mines and Minerals Development Christopher Yaluma has warned Konkola Copper Mines (KCM) against sub-contracting all its works as this may lead to job losses and drastic reduction in the lifespan of its operations in Zambia from 25 to two years.
Mr Yaluma says Government is disturbed by KCM’s plans to sub-contract all the jobs and will not entertain plans of transferring its various obligations to contractors.
He was speaking when he featured on Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation’s Sunday Interview television programme.