Special Police To Check Illegal Mining – Alake

The Federal Government has introduced a fresh blueprint aimed at revitalizing Nigeria’s solid mineral sector. The Minister of Solid Minerals Development, Mr. Dele Alake, unveiled this comprehensive plan during his appearance on NTA Weekend File on Sunday. In his presentation, he outlined various strategies and initiatives the government intends to implement to bolster the mining industry’s contribution to the national economy.

One of the key components of this plan involves providing a 30-day window for potential investors to obtain mining licenses, streamlining the bureaucratic process. Furthermore, a 60-day grace period will be afforded to illegal artisanal miners, encouraging them to formalize their operations, become financially sustainable, and fulfill their obligations by paying royalties and taxes to the government.

To tackle the issue of illegal mining, the government is set to establish a dedicated police force specifically tasked with combating unlawful mining activities across the entire country. The Minister also acknowledged that addressing security challenges in the mining sector would entail close collaboration with various security agencies and the establishment of this specialized police force, designed to address security concerns in the industry.

Alake said: “We found out through intelligence reports that some illegal miners are directly responsible for the upsurge of banditry in several parts of Nigeria.

“That is why I have been working with the various security agencies and the National Security Adviser, the outfit we are coming up with, and the President is fully in support of this.

“We are going to create a special police outfit. We’ll call it the Mining Police Force or the Mine Police.”

The proposed security outfit, according to the minister, will not be restricted to the mining sector and will cover marine and the blue economy.

He stressed that the special police force would be controlled by the ministry of solid minerals with its personnel reporting to officials in the ministry.

When asked what it takes for potential investors to get a mining license, Alake explained that the ministry would overhaul the whole process of application and licensing to make it as easy as possible.

He added: “That one-stop shop will enable you at a glance to know the processes that you have to go through so that you don’t need to go from one department to the other and be wasting time.

“It will tell you how to do it, what you should do, the requirements, etc. And the licenses after completing your applications legitimately must not take more than 30 days for it to be issued.”