By Francis Ndanema in Moyamba
Local Unit Commander at the Rutile police division, Alimamy Gibril Sesay, has confirmed to Concord Times that the police have charged to court nine suspects in connection with the riot at the Sierra Rutile mine site. The riot broke out following the discovery of the body of one Sallieu Kallon, said to be a security guard working for the SSGI security company.
According to LUC Sesay, some people used the riot as an opportunity to steal and destroy properties belonging to the Sierra Rutile mining company, and that the nine suspects will be making their second appearance in court on 17th February.
Meanwhile, the SSGI security agency has been largely blamed by some community people for both the killing and the riot that broke out. But some security officers deployed at the Rutile mining community pointed out that they staged the protest in respect of their murdered colleague, found dead at the site.
They claimed that it is almost becoming ‘a tradition’ that every year one of their colleagues would be discovered dead, so they had protested to express their dissatisfaction over such ugly developments.
Some of the guards who preferred anonymity further told Concord Times that they had also used the protest as a way of registering their dissatisfaction over their low salary and the poor working condition.
Media officer of Sierra Rutile company, William Freeman, confirmed that SSGI is still providing security for the company and that terminating their contract will be a management decision.
Meanwhile, Paramount Chief of Lower Banta Chiefdom, PC John Jibao Rusell Nyama, suggested that Sierra Rutile terminate its contract with SSGI. This, according to the traditional ruler, would help nip in the bud the regular killing of security guards in their mine, as well as save the image of the company.