General News of Monday, 18 June 2012

Source: Daily Guide

3 Kids Drown In Galamsey Pits

THREE CHILDREN, two of them cousins, drowned in galamsey pits full of water at Akrokerri in the Adansi North District and Atabrakoso in the Amansie Central District of the Ashanti Region on Thursday evening.

The victims, Paa Kow, 12, and Kwadwo Nkansah, nine, both class-one pupils of Akrokerri Practice School, were cousins, while Ebenezer Asiedu, an 18-year-old boy, completed Padmod Junior High School at Obuasi only this year.

Paa Kow and his cousin Nkansah had gone to the mining area, which was close to their house, to scoop some water from the pit when the younger one fell into the deep galamsey pit, DAILY GUIDE gathered.

Paa Kow then jumped into the pit to save Kwadwo Nkansah, but both drowned, some residents narrated.

According to them, the pit was dug by some illegal miners in the community, to prospect for gold some years ago, and had since been abandoned, collecting volumes of water which the galamseyers used to wash their body after work.

Father of one of the kids, Kwame Ku, 42, told the paper he was in his brother’s home around 6:30pm, after buying a drug from a chemical shop, when the news of the children’s death got to him.

According to him, he, together with his brother, ran quickly to the galamsey site where they found the bodies of Paa Kow and Nkansah which had been taken out of the pit.

“We got a report from the community that two of my children who are cousins had drowned in a galamsey pit, but I just accepted this as a pure tragic accident because I don’t know the one who found their bodies in the pit and how they were recovered,” he noted.

He however said he suspected foul play in the sudden death of the two kids, asking the police to investigate all angles of the case to answer lingering questions the family had.

Mother of one of the children, Adwoa Asantewaa, who was yet to come to terms with the incident, said one moment she saw Kow and Nkansah eating fufu together and the next, she heard about their sudden death.

The bodies of the two kids had since been deposited at the Obuasi Government Hospital, awaiting autopsy.

Ebenezer Asiedu, the 18-year-old JHS leaver, also got drowned in a galamsey pit at Atabrakoso, a village near Jacobu in the Amansie Central District of the Ashanti Region.

He had wanted to swim after working as a galamsey operator for some Chinese nationals in the area when he met his untimely death.

Father of the victim, Isaac Asiedu, who confirmed the incident to DAILY GUIDE, said Ebenezer’s body had been deposited at a hospital morgue at Jacobu after it was recovered by the police.

According to him, the tragedy occurred on Thursday around 4:30pm.

The boy was working as a galamsey operator to earn income, save and further his education, having completed JHS this year.