JUST IN: Federal Govt To Revoke More Mining Licences, Insists On Local Value Addition

Federal Govt To Revoke More Mining Licences, Insists On Local Value Addition

Federal Govt To Revoke More Mining Licences, Insists On Local Value Addition

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The federal has declared that it will soon revoke more mineral titles of firms that flout the laid down regulations.

The minister of solid minerals development, Dr. Dele Alake, stated this while answering journalists' questions during the launch of the Mines Marshals, a special forces to combat illegal miners across Nigeria yesterday at the ministry's office in , Thursday.

Dr Alake said the revocation of licences was an ongoing activity towards sanitising the solid minerals sector, which is one of the seven-point agenda of the ministry on his watch.

LEADERSHIP Friday recalls that the government had revoked 1633 mineral titles in November 2023 due to various infractions committed by the affected companies.

Also, the minister has ruled out granting mining licences to prospective investors if they do not show concrete plans for local value addition to the minerals towards employment generation and wealth creation.

Dr. Dele Alake stated this while playing host to members of the House Committee on Solid Minerals on an oversight visit to the ministry Wednesday.

According to a statement by the minister's special assistant on media, Segun Tomori, Alake applauded the lawmakers for their support in repositioning the mining sector, stressing that changing the economic fortunes of Nigeria is a joint task by both the executive and legislature.

He said following his election as the chairman of the Minerals Strategy Group (AMSG) on the sidelines of the Future Minerals Forum (FMF) in Riyadh, further, there is now unity of purpose on the continent on the issue of local value addition.

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“We are no longer going to allow anybody or licence any company that wants to go into the mineral sector without giving us a plan for local value addition like processing, refining and this has a multiplier effect on the economy. It instantly generates employment rather than a few people carting away lithium, gold, and the likes to other countries to sell. These minerals must now be processed in Nigeria, creating more value and beneficiation for local communities where they are sourced,” Dr. Alake added.

On security, the minister revealed that the federal government has finalised a new security outfit to secure the nation's natural resources that will incorporate the existing structure of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) with infusion of technology and specialised training.

“We have come up with what we believe can stem around natural resources like solid minerals, forests, and the marine economy. We decided to use the existing structure of the NSCDC because of the cumbersome process of establishing a new security architecture.  In terms of deterrence, the new NSCDC corps will be useful, “he asserted, adding that there will be a command in every state of the country.

According to the minister, modern day security architecture is predicated on mostly technology rather than reliance on only boots on the ground.

“What a whole battalion can do, one drone can do, so the new security outfit will be largely technologically driven, and they will be under the overall command of the Ministry of Solid Minerals Development (MSMD). They are to secure our mine sites, help in stemming theft, illegal mining, and carting away our solid minerals. The command structure of the new outfit will be inaugurated in the coming days, the Minister affirmed,” he said.

He further noted the significant contribution of sub-nationals to mining development, stressing that state chairmen of Mineral Resources and Environmental Management Committee (MIREMCO) and five members of the committee were nominated by state governments.

Highlighting the renewed interest of the international community in Nigeria's mineral resources, Alake stressed that his seven-point agenda had put the mining sector on the global front burner since his assumption of office.

“With the support of the permanent secretary, management and the House committee, we have been able to project the sector globally and the of our efforts culminated in my election as chairman of the Africa Minerals Strategy Group (AMSG) based on our 7-point agenda which was applauded by all and sundry. This is a group that consists of all African countries' of solid minerals/mineral resources,” he said.

In his remarks, chairman of the committee, Hon. Gaza Gbefwi expressed appreciation to the minister for cooperating with the legislature in its oversight function of checks and balances, emphasising that the committee will do what is necessary to back up reforms with requisite legislations that will enable the executive propel the sector into an enviable position, for significant contribution to the nation's economy.

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