Illegal Sand Mining Threatens Goderich Cemetery
Residents of Goderich in the Western Rural District have started getting the brunt of environmental degradation as their loved ones buried in the cemetery have no rest and respect any longer in their graves.
The persistent illegal sand mining at Funkia beach in Goderich has undermined the graveyard with rapid destruction of graves thereby leaving corpses floating on the beach whenever it rains heavily. “Anytime flooding occurs, we see human corpses and coffins floating,” a fisherman spoke of how frequently corpses are being exposed caused by sand mining This has prompted stakeholders, including the sitting Member of Parliament and councilors to raise alarm for the attention of the relevant authorities to take immediate action.
Member of Parliament for Constituency 110 hosting the cemetery Hon. Kadie Davies expressed great concern over the ugly development in an interview with the media recently.
She said persistent sand mining, activity has brought great disrespect to the dead, in addition to destroying the coastal environment.
The MP lamented that bodies of loved one are no longer respected because they are being washed by the tide. She said the situation is now becoming even more alarming as many youths see sand mining as the only means of generating income.
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Hon. Davies said over the years nobody has done anything about the problem and now the practice of sand mining has escalated with great negative cost on the environment. She said when miners dig out layers of a sand the river bank becomes less stable and more dangerous, causing quick sands and exposing the earth, noting that action was needed now. Also echoed by the Councillor for ward 386, Mohamed Mansaray was that even as
as all efforts are being made to protect the cemetery, sand miners continue to undermine the process, exposing the soil and damaging the environment. He said as stakeholders, they had personally tried to secure the cemetery from the floods but the uncontrolled illegal sand mining continues to pose great challenge.
Stakeholders in Constituency 110 are therefore calling on government through the Ministry of Environment and that of Lands and Country Planning to take robust and sustained action to control sand mining to avoid environmental degradation.
Councillor Mansaray suggested that government detailed beach guards to permanently patrol our beaches, including the Funkia beach