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Two prospectors killed by security guards at a mine in Cuango

Two prospectors were shot dead by security guards at the diamond mine in Cuango, Angola, who have already been detained, the head of the concessionaire said to Lusa, saying he would reevaluate the contract with the security company.


Speaking to Lusa, Helder Carlos, director of the Sociedade Mineira do Cuango, located in the province of Lunda Norte, confirmed that two young gold miners were shot dead by security guards from the company Kadyapemba, on Monday.

According to him, the young men were armed, with a machete and a firearm and tried to react violently when they were approached by security guards inside the concession of the diamond mine, which occupies an area of ​​about 3000 kilometers in the area. Cuango River.

"The prospectors tried to rise up and the security guards responded because of that attitude," said the mine official, indicating that the initial approach was to "persuade them" to leave the site.

In addition to the miners shot on Monday, there was another incident last week, on April 21, in which two young men were shot in the feet, "after trying to violently rebel against the guards", according to Helder Carlos.

"Security guards did the usual thing and fired warning shots," he stressed, adding that the miners were initially assisted at the medical post of the Cuango mining society and later transferred to the Cafunfo hospital, a location that was the scene of incidents in late January, between police and protesters, which resulted in an undetermined number of deaths (six, in the official version, more than twenty, according to members of civil society).

Helder Carlos stressed that illegal mining is recurrent in the mine area, which is why security companies are hired to protect the concession from "invasions", but "no act justified the use of force that leads to death".

According to him, the security company has opened an internal investigation process to ascertain the circumstances in which the incidents occurred and those responsible for the mine are also assessing the situation.

"We are going to make an assessment with the company's management and check if there are conditions to continue the contract", he stressed.

Helder Carlos also said that the mine contacted the victims' families to express "solidarity" and gave up the ballot boxes for the funerals, adding that Kadyapemba also provided a monetary amount to support family members.

The cases are being investigated by the Criminal Investigation Service of Cafunfo and have led authorities to tighten the supervision of security companies.

According to a statement posted on the Ministry of Interior's Facebook page, the chief superintendent, Abreu Muaco, delegate of the ministry and municipal commander of the National Police in Cuango, met earlier this week with the heads and heads of operations of the security companies. headquartered in that constituency to "check their legality in the exercise of their activities".

During the meeting, "issues related to arms and ammunition control were raised, in addition to the analysis of the latest criminal incidents involving security company guards," the report said.

The municipal commander "urged those present to have greater control over the lethal means made available to them, as well as the need to refrain from involvement in acts that constitute predicted and punishable crimes under the law," he adds.

The agency Lusa tried to contact the company Kadyapemba, without success so far.

It was also not possible to contact the delegation of the Ministry of Interior of Lunda Norte for further clarification.

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