Mines Minister Richard Musukwa has sounded a warning to Konkola Copper Mines (KCM) over their poor safety record in the recent past.
Three people have died in separate mine accidents at Konkola Copper Mines (KCM) in the last three months.
Musukwa said government is concerned with the increased number of fatal mine accidents which KCM had recorded within a short time.
Speaking at the 13th Inter-Company First Aid Competition which was held at Arthur Davies Stadium in Kitwe, Musukwa advised KCM to mobilise resources and pay suppliers whose employees have resorted to work stoppages.
“No one derives joy in making profits out of the death of a person, our mining companies, especially KCM which has recorded two fatal mine accidents in less than two months, should improve its safety record. I am urging KCM to ensure that they put their house in order because accidents do not just happen, they are caused,” Musukwa said.
“KCM should not give an excuse that they are failing to pay the contractors because of what government owes them in Value Added Tax (VAT) refund. No, that is not an excuse. They should just pay the contractors,” Musukwa said.
He stated that what government owes contractors in VAT is just a drop in the ocean and cannot be used as an excuse.
“We can’t just be talking about KCM, KCM safety, KCM not paying contractors. No. They should change the way they do things,” he added.