The show Time
Authorities have had to ban mining in a
village in the Democratic Republic of the
Congo after a mountain made up of gold-
rich soil was discovered.
Dozens of people flooded to the mountain in Luhihi, in Congo’s South Kivu province, following the discovery of the gold-rich ore in late February, with videos from the scene showing people digging at the ground with shovels and using their hands to try and extract the precious material from the ground.
Venant Burume Muhigirwa, South Kivu Mines Minister, said that the influx of diggers had put pressure on the small village where the mountain is located, around 50km (30 miles) from the provincial capital, Bukavu. Congo, Reuters reports.
‘Artisanal’ gold mining is said to be especially widespread in the gold- producing east and northeast of the country, but a decree released on Monday, March 1, required that all miners, traders and members of Congo’s armed forces (FARDC) leave the mine sites in and around Luhihi.
The suspension aims to give authorities time to identify the miners working at the mountain and ensure they are properly registered with artisanal mining regulators.
The decree noted that order must be re- established in mining activities in Luhihi ‘not only to protect lives but also to ensure the traceability of the gold produced in line with Congolese law.’