Expert warns of radioactive related diseases around Kayerekela: Paladin’s uranium mine in Malawi

Bruno Chareyron, a French nuclear physicist, has warned that people working and living around the Kayerekela Uranium Mine in Karonga are at high risk of contracting radioactive related diseases within the shortest period.

Bruno  explaining the situation at Kyerekera - things are not well.-Photo by Tiwonge Kumwenda, Nyasa Times

Bruno explaining the situation at Kyerekera – things are not well.-Photo by Tiwonge Kumwenda, Nyasa Times

Chief Kalonga - we will join to fight the battle during the meeting.-Photo by Tiwonge Kumwenda, Nyasa Times

Chief Kalonga – we will join to fight the battle during the meeting.-Photo by Tiwonge Kumwenda, Nyasa Times

Chareyron said Wednesday at the Karonga district chamber that the radiation emissions at the mine, owned by Australia’s Paladin Africa Limited (PAL), were abnormal.

He was in the country to collect water samples around the Kayerekela mine river system which local CSOs allege is contaminated following a spillage late last year.

“The normal radiation emission around the mine is supposed to 100 counts per second but surprisingly many places have 4 000 radiation gas counts per second which is very dangerous,” said Chareyron.

He added: “Workers at the mine, and the communities around are inheriting more radioactive gas every second and this could cause radioactive related diseases such as cancer.”

Chareyron, who was in the country to collect water samples around the mine over alleged contamination, reported that he was shocked that PAL cast a blind eye on the welfare of its staff.

“I saw a guard sitting in his guard room at the mine’s gate where emission was over 2 000 radiation gas count per second but when I asked one of Paladin’s officials he simply said the company had forgotten to construct a protected guardroom,” explained Chareyron.

He added that was a great mistake because almost all the gas was entering his body.

“The company does not have the welfare of its workers at heart,” he asserted.

The world acclaimed physicist asked the Malawi government to take keen interest as far as monitoring the goings-on at the mine were concerned.

“Government must take issues of mining seriously and protect the workers and the people around the mine because the current system the Paladin is using is a threat to the residents of the country,” advised Chareyron.

He explained: “Every mining company is supposed to monitor radioactive gases in the surrounding water courses, fish and workers’ urine but this is not happening at Kayerekela.”

Natural Resources Justice Network Link (NRJNL), a coalition of 33 non-governmental organizations, said they would liaise with government to make sure that the workers at Kayerekela are protected.

“We will make sure that we collectively correct things at the mine,” said NRJNL chairperson Kossam Munthali.

Senior Chief Kalonga urged non-governmental organizations in the country to support NRJNL in their pursuits.

“Government has betrayed us. Our only hope is in you CSOs. Please make sure that our lives and those of the workers at Kayerekela are protected,” he said.

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Bomanile
Guest

PAL have taken advantage of our lack of experts like Mr Chereyron to ‘forget’ putting safety measures. Govt should have sought the advice of scientists like him to advise before the commencement of the mining. We also need to train our own scientists on nuclear physics

Fake French Nuclear Scientist
Guest
Mogale you should simply tell us that uranium is a source of weapons of mass destruction and that the nuclear power plants are not safe considering what happened in Chenobyl in 1986 and more recently at Fukishima due to Tsunami. Don’t come to cheat us about radon gas. We know that radon gas is a source of short-lived polonium-218, lead-218 and bismuth214 which are collectively called radon daughters or progeny. These are a big concern in underground mines like those of Saskatchewan in Canada. If the monitoring is done and exposures happen to be less than an average of 20… Read more »
MADALA
Guest

WHAT ARE THE GAINS AND BENEFITS OF THIS MINE TO THE PEOPLE IF THEY ARE TOLD AND WA WARNED OF THE DANGERS ???ARE THE PEOPLE BLIND ;DUMB AND DEAF ???

Mogale
Guest
Charlie Hebdo and Jihad John Exposed, please do not misquote me. I have not refuted that radon is inert. However you may wish to note radioactive decay is not affected by external (external to the atomic nucleus) factors such as the state of matter (gas, liquid or solid) and the chemical compound in which the radioactive isotope is found. Thus the question of inertness of radon is inconsequential. The gas is still highly radioactive. Charlie, you seem not to understand the concept of HALF LIFE in radioactive decay. Let’s look at the 3.8 days for radon as an example. This… Read more »
Mbolo Sidwala!
Guest

Any comment frm one greg walker?

gmwangairo@gmail.com
Guest

lets stop the blame game now and start pondering solutions. together we stand, divided we fall. for if we stand together, we have the power to say YES or NO.

Fake French Nuclear Scientist
Guest

Radon gas is harmless but its daughters or progeny are. Uranium and thorium are less harmless by virtue of their long half lives that are in billions of years. The white man here is lying. Counts per seconds are used to determine contamination by radioactive material. The Geiger-Muller counter is used for this while sieverts determine exposure.

Enukweni
Guest

BRAVO KOSSAM AND THE GROUP, WE NEED PEOPLE WHO CAN STAND FOR THE TRUTH WHETHER MONEY OR NO MONEY. SOME ARE JUST SAYING ALOT OF THINGS BUT THEY ARE NOT IN KARONGA NETHER THEIR RELATIONS ARE. WE HAVE RELATIONS IN KARONGA AND WE SEE THAT AND THE PEOPLE WHO DINE WITH PALADIN ARE STAING IN LIONGWE AND ALTHOUGH SOME HAVE DIED BUT WE CAN SEE THERE WEALTH. MALAWIANS LETS LOVE OUR COUNTRY AND OUR PEOPLE

the poorest country on earth
Guest
the poorest country on earth

hahaha! what happens now? mulipo ochepa kale kumeneko pano radiation ikuphopholani! koma guys mulibe ntachi…lol

dadaboma
Guest

DPP has killed the people of KA and workers at PAL. DPP will rubbish these findings and accuse the French Researcher of fabrication. The poorest country in the world is now eating its own people for survival. PAL is giving a lot of money to DPP, and DPP would rather kill the people of KA to survive. This is cannibalism, a practice all animals resort to when placed in danger.

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