Storey building collapses in Jos over mining impacts on environment

Storey building collapses in Jos over mining impacts on environment

A storey building has collapsed in Bukuru, near Jos, Plateau State capital over what the locals said occurred as a result of mining impacts in the area that has left the environment devastated.

The building located near Bukuru Mini Stadium has a supermarket on the ground floor with offices upstairs.

The owner of the building, Mr. Moses Pam, who spoke over the incident, thanked God for sparing his life.

“At about 6:30 p.m. on Sunday, I went to take inventory of the goods in the shop.

“While in the shop, I heard a loud noise and I hurriedly ran and locked the shop.

“I started to go then I heard another loud noise and when I turned, I saw dust everywhere. That is all I can remember,” he said.

Pam said that without God’s divine intervention he would not have been alive to tell the story.

Mr. Chuwang Davou, who witnessed the incident, said that the building is standing on the soil that has since been weakened by abandoned mining ponds which are largely responsible for its collapse.

“As you can see, the building is just by the bank of a pond, it is it is standing on an underground mining pit,” Davou said.

Mr. Azga Polycarp, who lives in Jos and claims to have a good knowledge of how mining has destroyed the environment, told MAWA that there are many abandoned ponds in the area while pointing out that some buildings are standing on abandoned mining pits.

He, however, added that there is the likelihood of other buildings collapsing in the area.

Some of the locals who spoke to MAWA team narrated how mining activities in their area destroyed the environment leading to small-scale farmers losing their farmlands that are means of their livelihood.

A situation they say is affecting their income and making life difficult.

MAWA-Foundation’s visit to a Tin mining site located in the Rayfield area of  Jos in 2016 shows that virtually all the miners do not have the knowledge that mining activities can affect their health.

Many of the miners spoken to on the site say they are not aware that mining can cause injury to their health.

We also discovered that the site is a hub for smoking and drugs while women and children were seen inside deep holes that constitute a huge threat to their lives.

On entrance to the site, were able-bodied men holding wraps of India helm and gin. One of the men, Mr. Joseph told MAWA that they get their inspiration and strength from smoking helm.

“Bros, you see this India helm ehh, na em de give us inspiration and strength, nobody can work here successfully without smoking,” Joseph said. 

An official of the  National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) who confirmed the incident, thanked God that no life was lost.

NEMA Head of Search and Rescue, Mr. Nurudeen Musa, urged government agencies to always ensure all necessary steps are followed to avoid disasters and ensure the safety of citizens.

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