Census of artisanal miners begins in all the country

A National Census of Artisanal Miners get started throughout the national territory, the initiative was launched by the Government, aims to collect statistical data and the location of artisanal miners in Mozambique. This Census will support the Government to define better policies and strategies for the development of artisanal mining in the country. The Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy launched this activity, on August 9, 2021, in Mavuco, Administrative Post of Chalua, district of Moma, Nampula.

In an interview on the subject, CTV’s representative, Renato Uane, pointed out mineral artisanal impacts   in Cabo Delgado, he said that “the activities have been developed by CTV are focused on  legal, environmental and community health components through community awareness campaigns, education and training sessions”. These activities were developed within the scope of the Artisanal Mining project: Cultural and Environmental Rights in Cabo Delgado, in partnership with Medicus Mundi.

He also mentioned that in the legal component, the project is focused on legalizing twelve mining associations, in the environmental and health component, many activities were carried out, such as training sessions to associations addressing the use of a technique called the borax gravitational method to replace mercury, a harmful substance to human health, also to the environment”, and community awareness campaigns

He also told the audience that the project faced various challenges such as: i) ensuring that the associations legally practiced the activity; ii) reduce the presence of children in artisanal mining sites and the consequent school dropout; and iii) the need to establish a value chain for mining products that is fair and contributes to employment creation, especially for young people.

Regard to the Artisanal Miners Census  “, he congratulated the government for the initiative to carry out this activity, due to it will allow the acquisition of reliable data on the real number of people involved in this work directly and indirectly., it will also permit the Government and all stakeholders working in this sector to design better intervention strategies and, thereby enabling to  improve the practice of this activity, raise production and productivity levels and consequently the livelihood conditions of its practitioners”.

The first National Artisanal Miners Census of, consists of three phases, which will take place until the end of November, with a first one covering, in addition to Nampula, Maputo, Gaza and Inhambane provinces.

Regarding to the perspectives of this group, the interviewee added that there is a need to start looking at this activity, taking into account that natural resources are exhaustible and livelihood alternatives must be found, investing the proceeds in alternative economically viable activities. As an example, it was mentioned for instance that in Moma, Mogovolas and Angoche districts, in Nampula province, , there is a large potential  of livestock farming activity, mainly cattle and can be another investment bet beyond gains from artisanal mining.