Wednesday, 15 March 2017

FG warns illegal mining operators

The Federal Government has warned illegal mining companies conducting full scale mining operations on legitimate licensed operators’ sites in the country to desist.
Dr Kayode Fayemi, Minister of Mines and Steel Development gave the warning during a tour to Janruwa Village, Maganda District in Birnin Gwari Local Government, Kaduna on Wednesday.
Fayemi said that government would not keep quiet and expect illegal mining companies to continue to deprive legitimate licensed mining companies from mining on their sites.
He said that the government would not hesitate to bring full weight of the law on illegal mining companies conducting full scale mining operations on legitimate licensed operators’ sites
The minister expressed his dissatisfaction over an unknown mining company that invaded and conducted full scale mining on a site allocated to foreign company called Golden Resources Ltd.
“The mining operation going on here is not just being handled by a small scale or informal miner but this is a company conducting a full scale mining illegally like a legitimate licensed operator.
“The company has gone deep in mining minerals that belong to the foreign company; the operator also used explosive and I wondered where he got it from.
“I am in charge of signing explosive and I am sure I did not sign the one he used here; this kind of act must not continue if mining sector must grow in Nigeria.
Fayemi has ordered the Police Division in the Local Government and the mine officer in charge of the area to investigate the company operating illegally on the site.
He promised to assist the foreign company to look into the problem being encountered with the Kaduna state government to commence full mining operation.
Earlier, Mr James Nolan, Managing Director of the Golden Resources Limited, urged the minister to intervene on why the Kaduna state government stopped its company from commencing full mining after concluding exploration few years ago.
Nolan said that the company had being supporting the local community, adding that it had settled all the community development agreement when it commenced exploration seven years ago. 



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