Illegal Mining: Nigerian govt inaugurates task force in states

Olamilekan Adegbite. [PHOTO CREDIT: The Guardian Nigeria]
Olamilekan Adegbite. [PHOTO CREDIT: The Guardian Nigeria]

The federal government on Thursday said it has resuscitated the Presidential Mines Surveillance Task Force to curb illegal mining and environmental degradation.

The Task Force, which would be operating in all states of the federation, will also be responsible for plugging revenue leakages and institutionalisation of the National Council of Mining, and Mineral Resources Development.

The Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Olamilekan Adegbite, who disclosed this in his presentation to the National Economic Council also updated members of the current relationship between the federal and state governments in relation to fiscal governance of solid mineral sector.

The presentation was also to seek council’s support on the need to respect the provisions of the constitution and the Nigeria Minerals and Mining Act 2007 for improved synergy between the two tiers of government.

The minister also informed the council of his ministry’s efforts to strengthen the cooperation/ synergy between the three tiers of government on mining related matters.

He stressed the need for greater synergy between federal, states and local government for the mineral and mining sector to achieve its full potential.

“There is need for collaboration between the Federal Ministry of Mines and Steel Development and the State Governments.”

He said environmental issues and concerns in the states “have to be sorted out by the federal ministry working with the states”.

On community relationship, the minister told the council resolved that there should be a full-time engagement of the communities to avoid the mistakes made in the oil and gas sector.

Governor of Ekiti State and Chairman of the Nigeria Governors Forum (NGF), Kayode Fayemi, said an ad-hoc committee involving governors will be constituted to engage with the Federal Ministry of Mines, & Steel Development.

The committee will address all the issues involved in developing the solid mineral sector.

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