The general secretary of the Mexican Mining Union, Napoleón Gómez Urrutia, demanded on Friday an investigation of the owners of the mines in Sabinas, Coahuila, where ten workers remain trapped after a collapse.
Gómez Urrutia said that the mine owners had held positions in the municipal presidency, while he denounced the possibility that local authorities were involved.
In this sense, he said, "if it is proven that one of the owners of the concession is the Undersecretary of Labor of the State Government, it is something that still requires further investigation." The senator also pointed out that "the work should not represent a risk," and assured that the local authorities "do not comply with their obligation to inspect or supervise these coal miners-entrepreneurs."
At the same time, the mining leader highlighted that the workers "do not allow us to unionize them, because every time we approach them, they immediately change the mines, close them, fire them, and there is no authority" to make the owners comply with the law.
He continued to say that "they are almost like over-exploited temporary workers, with meager wages, and in undignified conditions, they are almost like coal pits, they cannot even be considered mines properly speaking because they do not have any adequate safety conditions to protect the lives of the workers."
Based on this, Gómez Urrutia requested a comprehensive reform to the Mining Law in order to guarantee safe and adequate conditions for mining workers in Mexico.
According to preliminary reports, the workers encountered a subway river more than 100 meters deep, so the coal shaft began to flood and caused the collapse that trapped them.