Tangible reports gathered by the Daily Observer speak of tragedy at a gold mining site called No Way Camp, Marloi Township, in Central Glaakon Statutory District No. 2, Grand Bassa County.
More than 20 miners are feared dead while several reportedly sustained multiple injuries and were rushed to a distant health center outside the township for medical treatment, according to the reports.
The incident took place almost at the end of December 2014 at the gold camp following a random shooting which caused a falling dirt wall that was said to have been undermined by the miners themselves.
Survivors of the incident identified as George David, Pedehgar Tamu and one Obediah, who fled the scene confirmed the disaster during a separate interview with the Daily Observer in the township.
They narrated that the incident started when over 2000 mining job seekers were asked by managers of the No Way Camp to pay the amount of L$500 each as a fee to obtain the jobs.
However, hell broke loose when the managers received the fees and deliberately failed to offer the men the jobs, the survivors reported. They said the aggrieved men went on a rampage and reportedly attacked the managers’ homes demanding the refund of their money since they could not get the jobs.
They alleged that during the riot, the security guards at the mining site opened fire at the crowd with their single barrel guns and allegedly killed an unspecified number of people. A dozen of the men who ran for their lives jumped in a 40-foot gold pit and those who were already in the pit instantly died when the dirt wall broke and fell on all of them, the survivors stated.
They further disclosed that the crowd demolished the managers’ houses and looted their belongings including 25kg bags full of gold and one containing 75 grams of gold, according to the survivors’ account.
Because of the tragic incident, the traditional people in the vicinity abruptly closed the camp and banned all mining activities to prevent further disaster. It is not clear when the camp will be reopened, the survivors said.
It is reported that government has deployed security personnel at No Way Camp to make sure that calm and peace are restored.
When contacted, the Grand Bassa County Information Officer, Eddie Williams, confirmed that “an incident” had happened at No Way Camp. Williams also told the Observer that Police officers from Buchanan had there to restore calm and to find out what had gone wrong.
Thirty-two years ago, it can be recalled, residents of a camp in Grand Cape Mount County with the same name—No Way Camp—suffered almost similar disaster on a Tuesday morning in October.