Niger State Governor,Abubakar Sani Bello has announced the immediate suspension of all mining activities in Gurmana, Shiroro Local Government Area, Anguwan Kampani, M.I. Wushishi Housing Estate, College of Education, Army Barracks and Lapan-Gwari in Chanchaga Local Government Area of the State.
A statement issued by Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Ahmed Ibrahim Matane said the decision to suspend mining activities became necessary following security, health, environmental hazards and the illicit drug peddling in the areas posed to the people.
The SSG further explained that the suspension of mining activities in the areas mentioned followed report that clearly established a strong and glaring nexus between the activities of bandits, prostitution, gangsterism and illegal Miners with both mutually re-enforcing each other.
The statement further warned that any mining operator caught engaging in mining activities in the areas mentioned would face the full wrath of the law.
“The present administration in the State is leaving no stone unturned in fashioning out strategies that will bring lasting solution as well as forestall any breach of security in the State’’ hence the need for the people to be security conscious and report all suspicious characters, movements or objects in their communities to security agents”. Ahmed Matane said.
He therefore reiterated that the present administration under the leadership of Governor Abubakar Sani Bello would make the state a model in the mining sector for others to emulate, where employment and wealth would be created in an atmosphere of peace and tranquility.
“Protecting the sanctity of life and property of the people of the State is irrevocable; therefore Government will not scale-down the pressure on the armed bandits, kidnappers and cattle rustlers until they are totally flushed-out of the State”, the statement stressed.
The SSG alsonappealed for the cooperation of the Nigeria Mining Association in the State, local communities, especially traditional and religious leaders within the communities where mining activities are taking place so as to rid the State of criminal elements.