Adegbite gives hope to artisanal, small scale gold miners

As FG intensify effort to weed out criminality in gold business

Adegbite gives hope to artisanal, small scale gold miners

By Gabriel Ewepu – Abuja

The Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Arc Olamilekan Adegbite, Friday, gave hope to Artisanal and Small Scale Gold Miners, ASGMs, for greater productiveness and efficiency within the gold sub-sector.

Adegbite said this on the Nigerian Economic Summit Group, NESG, webinar with the theme, ‘Post COVID-19 Nigeria: Impact and Opportunities on the Mining Industry’.

According to him, the federal government has resolved to galvanise the gold business via its Presidential Artisanal Gold Mining Initiative, PAGMI, as effort is being made to formalize, organise and equip ASGMs in Kaduna, Kebbi, Osun, Niger, and the Zamfara States.

READ ALSO: Mining: FG to ban barite importation — Adegbite

He additionally identified that with the dwindling fortune of oil costs within the worldwide market courtesy of influence of novel Coronavirus, COVID-19 pandemic, which had induced Nigeria income shortfall, there isn’t any different possibility than to place the mining sector within the forefront as an alternative choice to the unstable oil sector to salvage the nation’s economic system, which President Muhammadu Buhari is making efforts to diversify the economic system via stable minerals sector together with agriculture.

He additionally counseled the NESG for its efforts to organise the webinar in the direction of mitigating the influence of COVID-19 on the nation’s economic system and described the dialogue on the alternatives influence of the Covid-19 pandemic has on the mining business as well timed.

The Minister mentioned with over 44 totally different mineral sorts occurring in over 500 places throughout the 36 States and the Federal Capital Territory in Nigeria, made it recognized that Seven of those minerals have been designated strategic to unlock the big potential within the sector. They are coal, iron ore, bitumen, gold, limestone, lead-zinc, and barite.

He mentioned: “Seven of those minerals have been designated strategic to unlock the big potential within the sector. They are coal, iron ore, bitumen, gold, limestone, lead-zinc, and barite.

“Government precedence is at present anchored within the gold sector and thru the continued Presidential Artisanal Gold Mining Initiative (PAGMI) we’re organising, formalising, and equipping Artisanal and Small Scale Gold Miners (ASGMs) in Kaduna, Kebbi, Osun, Niger, and the Zamfara States.

“Miners of valuable, metallic, and industrial minerals might be linked to formal markets via licensed non-public mineral shopping for centres. One such initiatives is the just lately launched Dukia-Heritage Bank Buying Centre.

“Two companies (Kian Smith and Dukia Gold Limited), located in Ogun state and the FCT, have been granted licenses to refine gold and are in the process of building their refineries.”

Meanwhile, the Minister disclosed that because the Federal Government via the Ministry of Mines and Steel Development is at present an intensifying effort to weed out criminals within the gold business.

“I equally want to level out some ongoing initiatives we have now designed to help the sector. One of which is the optimisation of our mineral worth chain. The final goal is to minimise the export of uncooked supplies, creating worth alongside the chain that will improve industrial and manufacturing actions, create employment, and foster expertise growth.

“Presently, our priority is anchored in the gold sector. We are creating a gold ecosystem to minimize the high rate of illegal gold mining and smuggling, increase government’s revenue from the resource, create jobs, and improve environmental and social stewardship”, he said.

Meanwhile, he (Adegbite) maintained that the federal government will not be relenting to wake and put Ajaokuta Steel Company on its toes and operating primarily based on the bilateral settlement reached between Nigeria and Russia.

Also talking was the President of Miners Association of Nigeria, MAN, Kabir Kankara, attributed the challenges of artisanal and small scale miners to lack of kit, capability constructing, and funding.

READ ALSO: 19 unlawful Chinese miners ‘ll be prosecuted in accordance with Mining Act — Adegbite

Kankara lamented the COVID-19 pandemic influence that has degraded the sector to the bottom ebb, which miners needed to steer clear of their websites, therefore it has introduced hardship to his members.

The miners’ boss tasked the federal government to duplicate intervention seen within the agricultural sector just like the Anchor Borrower Scheme, ABS, within the mining sector, which is able to enhance the productiveness of ASMs.

He additionally spoke on the necessity for synergy between the Manufacturer Association of Nigeria (MAN) and Miners Association of Nigeria (MAN) when it comes to uncooked supplies for the native industries.

Meanwhile, Minister of State for Mines and Steel Development, Dr. Uchechukwu Ogah, in a closing comment careworn the necessity to make the mining sector a serious income earner together with agriculture.

Ogah expressed optimism that the end result of the convention would assist in coverage formulation for the optionally available efficiency of the mineral and metallic sector.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *