Provoked by heavy rainfall, the incident killed nearly 40 people at the location of AXMIN's Passendro project. But the gold miner has not had access to the mine since December 2012 due to political volatility and a brief occupation by rebel groups, the company said. Since that time artisanal miners have been working the site.
"The greatest risk to illegal artisanal mining activities is safety, where miners build tunnels and deep pits in unstable conditions," said George Roach, AXMIN's CEO.
The company has met with representatives of CAR's new transitional government and they are working to resume operations and secure the site as quickly as possible, said Roach.
AXMIN has projects and exploration properties in Central African Republic, Sierra Leone, Mali, Senegal and Mozambique.
Creative Commons image by: The Great Southwestern Exploration Company