By KETRA KALUNGA
YOUTHS in Kabwe must away from defunct Zink and Lead mining sites because they are highly hazardous areas, Ministry of Mines and Mineral Development permanent secretary, Bernaby Mulenga gas directed.
And the Medical Quality Health Care Zambia (MQHZ) has warned that Lead was very poisonous and that exposure to even low level of it could cause serious damage over time especially in children and young adults.
This follows revelations that hundreds of youths in Kabwe have invaded closed Zink and Lead mining sites.
Mr Mulenga urged youths to stay away from the closed Kabwe Zink and Lead mine for their own safety.
Official reports have indicated that the invaded mine was highly contaminated with lead.
A recent study revealed that over 1,000 children in Kabwe were being treated for lead poisoning.
Mr. Mulenga said in an interview with the Daily Nation that an excuse that the site was there only source of income could not compesate for their lives because the site was highly contaminated with lead.
“Our caution is that the youths should stay away from the mine for their own safety and their families, of course they are saying that they don’t have an alternative livelihood that’s is why they go there but they need to avoid going there,” he said
And MQHZ director general, Doctor Quince Mwabu said that Lead poisoning could cause retarded brain development.
“The higher level of lead dust can damage the kidney and nervous system in both children and adults, very high lead level may cause seizures, unconsciousness and possible death,” he said.
Dr. Mwabu has since urge all those that been exposed to lead dust and any form of lead to be tested for lead level in their body system and get treated for lead poisoning.
By KETRA KALUNGA