The Federal Government has urged miners in the country to strictly adhere to proper licensing procedures before commencing operation, vowing to implement stringent actions against illegal miners.
The Minister of Solid Minerals Development, Dr Dele Alake stated this on Thursday during a meeting with licensed mineral holders, laterite and sand operators in Kaduna State.
According to the Minister, after securing their mining license, the operators also ought to obtain a permit, stressing that a “Permit to mobilize to the site is a letter that will introduce you to the state and local governments as well as communities through their traditional ruler, making mining activities smoother.”
The Minister who was represented by the acting Zonal Mines Officer, Mr Kutman Ali, urged the operators in Kaduna State to endeavour to clear their outstanding debts promptly.
Highlighting the financial obligations, Alake revealed that miners and operators across the country owed the Federal Government over N2 trillion, with Kaduna State alone accumulating a debt exceeding N300 billion.
Alake said the meeting was to outline the minister’s plans for the mining sector in 2024 and beyond.
He emphasized the revitalization of the Special Mines Surveillance Taskforce (SMSTF) to combat illegal mining and ensure timely payment of royalties and taxes.