Earlier this year, operations, at a Chinese controlled mine in Region one, were suspended after two workers died following a brief “mysterious illness.”
However, the green-light has been given for works to recommence at that mine come next year.
During a recent radio programme, Minister of Natural Resources, Raphael Trotman said that production of manganese is expected to continue in that region and will result in at least 600 direct jobs for Guyanese.
Trotman assured that the Chinese consortium in control of the mine is focusing on safety following the setback. He said that measures are being put in place to avoid similar reoccurrences.
The Minister indicated that both the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Guyana Geology and Mines Commission (GGMC) have given approval for the works to recommence.
“Both the EPA and the GGMC would have given provisional green light to restart preparations. Production will commence next year. It will be 500,000 tonnes per annum of ore that is going to be produced.”
Back in March of this year, it was reported that while cleaning bat droppings from one of four tunnels at the mining site called “Rail Ends,” nine workers – eight Chinese and one Guyanese – started experiencing pain, fever, headaches and respiratory distress. Close to 20 employees of the company, most of them Chinese labourers, were treated after being infected with an infectious disease.
The government’s Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) Department later found that the workers did not use protective gears which caused them to come in contact with the histoplasmosis fungus, a bacteria said to be associated with decayed bat droppings.