A 12-year-old girl was buried alive while two others were rescued after walls of a gold mine collapsed on them in the north-western Kenyan county of West Pokot.
Local administrators said the minors were scouring for the precious metal when the mine caved in and killed one of them on Thursday night.
Faustino Longora, a local chief said the victims of the accident were aged 12, 13, and 14, respectively.
“Neighbours heard screams and rushed to the mine and managed to rescue two of the minors. One of them had already died,” said Longora.
He said that children have been flocking to the goldmines to eke out a living amid prolonged school closure linked to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Since the school closed due to the Covid-19 pandemic, most children have turned to mining to earn income to enable their parents to buy food,” said Longora.
He said the government will support alternative sources of livelihood for nomadic communities amid rampant poverty linked to extreme weather events and inter-communal skirmishes.