Illegal mining activities will not be tolerated, Alake says

The Minister of Solid Minerals Development, Dr. Dele Alake, has warned that his ministry will not tolerate any illegal mining activities in the country and will take appropriate measures to curb the menace.

Dr. Alake, who is also a former commissioner for information and strategy in Lagos State and a veteran journalist, made this statement on Thursday during a meeting with stakeholders in the mining sector at the ministry’s headquarters in Abuja.

He said that illegal mining is a serious threat to the nation’s economy, security, and environment, as it deprives the government of revenue, causes environmental degradation, exposes miners to health hazards, and fuels conflicts and criminality in the mining communities.

He said that his ministry has launched a comprehensive campaign to identify and clamp down on illegal miners across the country and will collaborate with other relevant agencies such as the Nigeria Police Force, the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, and the National Environmental Standards and Regulations Enforcement Agency to enforce the law.

He also said that his ministry is committed to developing the solid minerals sector in line with the vision of President Bola Tinubu, who appointed him as minister in August 2023. He said that his ministry is working to create an enabling environment for investors, provide adequate infrastructure and incentives, improve data and information management, and enhance capacity building and skills development for miners.

He urged the stakeholders to support his ministry’s efforts to transform the solid minerals sector into a major contributor to the nation’s gross domestic product (GDP), job creation, and poverty reduction. He also appealed to the traditional rulers and community leaders to cooperate with his ministry in ensuring peaceful and sustainable mining activities in their domains.

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