By Aideloje Ojo
Nine illegal miners have reportedly died in Niger state in a mining site disaster that buried seven alive while the police shot two others in a violent protest that followed the incident.
The police shooting was said to have occurred Saturday evening in Kafin-Koro town in Paikoro local government area of the state.
Although the identity of the miners killed were not immediately known, our correspondent learnt that the police drafted to cordon off the illegal site following the disaster were attacked by the miners resulting in the shooting
The witness said: “The incidence occurred when the illegal miners in their large numbers decided to attack policemen deplored to the mining site after the death of seven illegal miners at the mining site who were buried in the hole they dogged.”
Checks revealed that the illegal miners had defied every warning from both the state government and security agents in the state to desist from their illegal activities, and that they mobilised themselves to waylay the policemen armed with dangerous weapons.
The Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO) of the Niger state police command, DSP Bala Elkana, confirmed the incident in Minna yesterday explaining that a policeman seriously injured in the incident
He said the police had sealed off the illegal site and warned all those involved in the illegal mining activities to keep off the area.