Over 300 illegal miners have been apprehended

The Minister of Solid Minerals Development, Dele Alake, has indicated that Nigeria currently has 44 globally sought-after mineral resources in abundance.

He also said that the government apprehended a total of over 300 illegal operators with more than 133 currently undergoing prosecution.

This was as he affirmed that reforms implemented by the Tinubu administration have led to a renewed investor interest in Nigeria’s mining sector.

Giving the keynote address at the Nigeria Middle East Investors Expo and Awards on Friday, Alake stated that the Federal Government’s focus on solid minerals has redirected global attention to Nigeria’s mining sector, spurring increased investments and revenue for the country.

He stated that the government has identified over 40 million tonnes of talc deposits in Niger, Osun, Kogi, Ogun, and Kaduna states.

Read More  Akpabio Weighs In On Wike And Ireti Kinigbe Feud, Advises Minister On What To Do

While approximately 1 billion metric tonnes of iron ore in Kogi, Enugu, Niger states, and the Federal Capital Territory; and an estimated 10 metric tonnes of lead and zinc spread over eight states, among others according to available mineral data.

Alake said, “We have over 44 globally sought critical minerals in Nigeria. A crucial factor for foreign investment is data. We are working to significantly increase funding for exploration to generate the necessary big data that will attract major international players and position Nigeria as a global mining destination.”

Highlighting the impact of his 7-point agenda, the Minister detailed the successes of the mining marshals in combating illegal mining activities, leading to the arrest and prosecution of numerous culprits across the country.

He revealed that the officers have apprehended a total of over 300 illegal operators with more than 133 currently undergoing prosecution.

Read More  Employment Trust Fund created 221,000 jobs – Sanwo-Olu

“Since deploying the mining marshals as part of our comprehensive plan to sanitize the mining environment, they have been working assiduously and efficiently. Over 300 illegal operators have been apprehended, with more than 133 currently undergoing prosecution. We are making significant progress,” A statement by the Special Assistant on Media
to the Minister, Segun Tomori read.

To enhance the operations of the mining marshals, Alake revealed plans to incorporate satellite monitoring of mining sites.

“We are installing satellite surveillance mechanisms, allowing us to monitor all mining sites in Nigeria from the Minister’s office, identify any illicit activities, and promptly deploy mobile mining marshals,” he said.

In furtherance of efforts to improve the operating environment and ease of doing business, Alake recalled the recent launch of the Decision Support System, an online platform providing comprehensive information about Nigeria’s solid minerals sector to assist prospective investors worldwide in making informed decisions about investing in the mining sector.

Read More  Lagos Tricyclist Commits Suicide After Failure To Retrieve Seized Tricycle

Highlighting the abundance of high-grade critical minerals in the country, Alake affirmed Nigeria’s readiness for business and encouraged investors to take advantage of improved regulatory frameworks and incentives.

On Thursday, the minister announced a review of mining rates and dues to enhance ease of doing business and consolidate ongoing reforms.

The new rates which affect 268 items in the industry aim to maximise royalties from critical minerals such as lithium and gold to boost the nation’s revenue and contribute significantly to economic development.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *