One year after the death in the "Soko" mine - the families are still waiting for answers and do not accept that no one is to blame.
On this day in 2022, 8 families lost their loved ones, miners who died in the “Soko” mine, and during that time they received decisions twice from the competent prosecutor’s office in Aleksinac – that no one was to blame for the accident. However, they do not accept that explanation, because this mine has been working without a permit for more than a year, and while they are waiting for the third verdict, they are preparing an initiative to form an inquiry committee in the Assembly, in order to finally get answers to the questions of how this mining accident happened.
CINS journalists described in detail what happened on the night of April 1 last year, when 8 miners were killed and more than 20 injured during the third shift in the Mine near Sokobanja.
What is not known even a year after the tragedy are the answers to the questions that both the families and the public expect – who is to blame for this mining accident.
Twice they have already received an official decision from the Basic Public Prosecutor’s Office in Aleksinac, which is conducting the investigation, that it was an accident, which they refuse to believe. And their lawyer is explicit that the responsibility must be established, because for 14 months the “Soko” Mine has been excavating pits without a work permit.
Such an accident with catastrophic consequences should have happened in order for the mining inspector to prohibit the further execution of the works – said lawyer Bratislav Stojanović recently.
For the third time, the same prosecutor’s office, by order of the High Court in Nis, has been investigating responsibility for the death for two months, and the families of the deceased are still waiting for that decision.
Next week, they will announce new details about the case, and they have decided to officially submit a proposal to the Serbian Parliament for the formation of an inquiry committee, in order to try to get answers to the questions – why the 8 miners did not return from the third shift to their families.
The proceedings before the prosecutor’s office are still ongoing, evidentiary actions have been taken, which means that the injured party and some other witnesses have been questioned. But the prosecution has not yet made any final decision, the case is still ongoing. If the criminal complaint is dismissed again, we again have the right to file an objection, given that it is not a final decision, so as before we have the right to appeal. We have made proposals for taking certain evidentiary actions and we are waiting for the prosecution to respond accordingly – according to the “Stojanović” Law Office.
Pit excavations are still prohibited in this mine, and when the surface mine started operating two months ago, the new Minister of Mining and Energy, Dubravka Đedović, said that until it was safe, the miners would not return to the pit.