Governor Bello Mohammed (Matawallen Maradun) has inaugurated a 20 man Anti-illegal mining committee with his Special Adviser on Inter-Governmental Affairs, Alhaji Sani Abdullahi (Wamban Shinkafi) as chairman
This was contained in a statement issued to newsmen and signed by the Special Adviser to the Governor on Public Enlightenment Media and Communications, Zailani Bappa Wednesday.
Governor Matawalle said the institution of the committee was imperative in the light of the continued illegal mining activities despite outlawing of the practice which, in itself, is counter productive.
“Even though mining is placed on the exclusive list in our constitution, mining activities have a huge impact on our State’s economy and the lives of our people”, Governor Matawalle said.
He said that the sector is very significant to the economy of the state.
To underscore its importance, he noted that, “before the current suspension of mining activities in the State by the Federal Government, a survey had shown that over 100,000 artisanal miners are operating in the state”.
“The majority of miners working in the various mining fields do so without any type of license, such as reconnaissance, exploration, or mining leases license.
“This deprives the federal government of royalties and the State Government from access fees, ground rents, and other levies that the State may deem appropriate in order to facilitate the safety, security and wellbeing of the miners and the mining communities, all while remaining within the legal parameters,” he said.
Blueprint reported that the activities of illegal mining may have a link to the tertorist activities troubling the state, hence the ban by the federal government and the establishment of the anti illegal miming squad which the Committee at the state level will now complement.
The Committee has as its terms of reference to; identify the sites where mining activities take place in the state, determine the type and size of the activities taking place on each of the sites, to identify owners of the site and the genuineness of their ownership, to ascertain the extent of conformity of the mining activities in the state with mining regulations and to advise the state Government on any other mining-related issue, as well as on mining revenue sources for the state.