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Trespasser drowns at KKP during alleged attempted theft

Trespasser drowns at KKP during alleged attempted theft

On the night of 15 September 2011, the Operational Security Division (OSD) of the Tankoro Police Division assigned to the Koidu Kimberlite Project (KKP) operations in Kono District detected a group of youth, who had trespassed on the property, in the vicinity of the processing plant water dam where final recovery tailings are stored. Realising the presence of the OSD personnel, the youth fled through the water dam. The incident was reported to the Koidu Holdings security department and was recorded as one of four intrusions that took place on the same night.

Approximately 12 hours after the incident, a 16-year old boy reported at the Tankoro Police Station that one of a group of four youth involved in the alleged attempted theft of final recovery tailings at KKP had not been seen since they encountered  the OSD personnel patrolling the KKP final recovery area the night before.  The boy, who claimed to be one of the four youth involved in the alleged attempted theft, alleged that he had heard gunfire as they were fleeing, which led many to conclude that his colleague had been shot by the OSD personnel.

Upon receipt of the report, the Local Unit Commander (LUC) of the Tankoro Police Division, Mr Max Kanu and other members of the District Security Committee (DISEC), including the Senior District Officer (SDO), Kono District, Mr Gettu, visited the scene to verify the information. On Saturday, 17 September 2011, at around 07h00, the body of the boy was found by one of the G4S security guards at the plant water dam.  It was recovered by the Police who then took it to the Koidu Government Hospital where a post-mortem was conducted in the presence of the deceased’s relatives, civil society representatives, the police, youth representatives and other stakeholders within the community.  The post-mortem showed that the cause of death was drowning. No gunshot wounds were found on the body.

Despite the alleged criminality associated with this unfortunate event, Koidu Holdings regrets that a young boy lost his life in this manner and has therefore undertaken to fast track the construction of its perimeter wall to deter trespassers in the future.  We are appealing to all parents in our community to safeguard their children and discourage them from these types of activities which, as has been shown, can lead to tragedy. We will embark on additional Community Health and Safety activities to educate our youth of these dangers to avoid further loss of life. We will however need the support of our broader community to help get these messages across to our young people.

For further information, please contact:

Ibrahim Kamara
Chief Communications Officer
Koidu Holdings SA
84 Wilkinson Road
Freetown, Sierra Leone
Telephone: +232 78 874 912
Fax: +232 22 230 467
Mobile: +232 76 750 984

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