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SOLDIERS TURNED ILLEGAL MINERS: MP Sounds Alarm On Illegal Occupation of Mine By Walikale Soldiers

A group of military personnel of the Walikale in North Kivu Province have illegally encroached on and occupied the Bolwe Mining Site Punia territory in the neighbouring Maniema Province of the DRC.

Punia territory local deputy Kalukula Lutaka has revealed that the soldiers are in the acts of plundering minerals at the mining site and have forcefully driven local artisanal miners out of the area.

“It is sad news of the illegal occupation of soldiers coming from the territory of Walikale in the province of North Kivu, who are violating the boundary between the territory of Walikale and that of Punia by settling in the mining cooperative of Bolwe in Camp Onwa for a good period of time,” Lutaka said.

Lutaka regretted that the presence of soldiers in the area had been a source of misery for Punia residents had been deprived of a chance to earn a living.

“We are sorry that these soldiers are rebelling against the peaceful population by exploiting and causing a loss of income for the province of Maniema,” he said.

He has since called on the relevant authorities to intervene on the matter and provide a solution before the worst happens.

This is the latest incident in a series of border violations that have been committed between the two provinces and illustrates the ongoing incapability by government to controlling mining areas that are often marred by a plethora of illegal activities in the DRC.

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