Ministry of Mines and Steel Development has expressed readiness to partner State Governments in the fight against illegal mining activities in the country.
The Permanent Secretary, Dr. Mary Ogbe, stated this while hosting the Governor of Taraba State, Dr. Agbu Kefas in Abuja.
Dr. Ogbe who was represented by the Director, Human Resource Dept in the ministry, Alhaji Suleiman, Muhammad Kabir explained that the collaboration would assist in curbing the menace of illegal mining in Taraba state which has become an endemic.
He described illegal mining as an economic crime that has caused hemorrhage to government’s revenue.
“To this end, Dr. Ogbe posited that the Ministry cannot combat the menace of illegal mining alone, and therefore, sought robust dialogue between the Ministry and Taraba State Government, to enhance and sustain its effort to eliminate activities of illegal miners within the ambit of the law” he added.
While commending the action of the State Government towards preventing breakdown of law and order resulting from illegal mining, the Permanent Secretary commended the proactive measures taken by Governor Kefas to end the menace.
She appealed to the Governor for assistance to legal miners in the state in boosting investor’s confidence.
On his part, the Governor of Taraba state condemned the activities of illegal miners in the state which has led to communal clashes and environmental degradation.
Governor Kefas urged the ministry to open channels of communication between the state and the ministry to authenticate licenses issued by the Ministry to investors as well as other documentations for exploration of mineral resources.
“To curb and eliminate illegal mining activities, i urge the Ministry of Mines and Steel Development to open a corridor of communication and effective collaboration with Taraba State Government, that will process and authenticate licenses issued by the Ministry of Mines and Steel Devpt. to investors as well as other documentations for exploration of mineral resources” he added.
He emphasised that this would create an enabling environment for attracting genuine investors into the state to achieve the much desired socio-economic transformation of the country.
Georgina Humphrey, Edited By Grace Namiji
Written by: Bukky Alabi
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