The Mine Health and Safety Statistics that were released by the Department of Minerals and Energy today are pleasing for several reasons:
- · Clearly, the continued engagement between organised labour, government and mining companies to eradicate fatalities and injuries on the mines and to work towards the elimination of occupational diseases is bearing fruit.
- · Injury and fatality numbers are going down and the goal of Zero Harm seems increasingly attainable.
- · There were no disasters recorded in 2019, This is for the first time since 2016.
In the 2018 to 2019 period, the number of fatalities improved by 37%. 51 fatalities were reported in 2019 as opposed to the 81 reported in 2018.
This is the lowest number of fatalities reported by the sector to date.
There was a 2% decrease in the number of injuries, from 2 447 in 2018 to 2 406 in 2019; occupational diseases decreased by 23% from 4 483 cases in 2017 to 3 458 cases in 2018.
UASA welcomes the department’s commitment to ensure sustainable improvement in the health and safety of mine workers. We are going to continuously engage with all mining stakeholders in our endeavor to attain zero fatalities or injuries through programs such as the Khumbula e’Khaya CEO led strategy.
These statistics are evidence that when all stakeholders in the mining sector come together, Zero Harm is attainable and not a distant desire.
Workers are a mine’s most valuable asset and as such they should be protected against any harm and even death in the workplace.
For further enquiries or to set up a personal interview, contact Stanford Mazhindu at 074 978 3415.