Reports that a gold mining firm has applied for a licence to extract the precious metal from the leftovers of small-scale miners in Migori is a clear sign that the local residents have been left to their own devices for too long.
Though there is too much gold in Migori, there has been little benefit for the residents.
There’s need for policy intervention to formalise the sector so as to economically empower the small-scale miners.
The fact that the private company has applied to be allowed to mine what the artisanal miners have left behind is vivid proof of the great potential the sector has. It is indeed a great shame that in the 21st century the artisanal miners are still using rudimentary techniques in their search for gold.
The men and women engaged in the trade have no proper working equipment and the little they mine only benefits the rogue middlemen who have left them stuck in an endless cycle of poverty and despair.
The national and county governments should pool resources and find a conducive way of helping out the small-scale miners reap from the industry.