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Nigeria Vows Crackdown on Illegal Mining

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Nigerian authorities are cracking down on illegal mining activities following a viral video showing trucks laden with materials suspected to be uranium. The Minister of Solid Minerals Development, Dr. Dele Alake, has vowed to punish those involved after a thorough investigation.

Discrepancies in Reports Spark Investigation

The controversy began with a video circulating online in April 2024, depicting 15 trucks carrying minerals allegedly extracted from the Gwande Local Government Area in Benue State. The video sparked concerns about illegal mining and the potential dangers of radioactive materials.

Following the video’s emergence, Dr. Alake launched a discreet investigation by the Mines Inspectorate. Their findings suggested the video might be linked to a dispute between mining companies vying for control of the area.

The statement also pointed that there were discrepancies in the account divulged by representatives of the communities, the operators, and mines Inspectorate officials after the Minister listened to those involved, therefore he vowed to ensure painstaking investigations and bring to book those that might have run foul of the law.

However, to gain a clearer picture of the situation, Dr. Alake summoned representatives from the affected communities, mining operators, and mines inspectorate officials from Benue State. The minister noted inconsistencies in the accounts provided by each group.

Zero Tolerance for Illegal Mining and Corruption

Dr. Alake emphasized strong action against those found to be breaking the law. “We’ve heard from all parties involved and identified discrepancies in their accounts,” he declared.

“We will thoroughly investigate all issues related to the incident and any operator found culpable will have their licenses revoked, if some of our officials also connived to perpetrate sharp practices, they will also be made to face the full weight of the law.”

Source: Vanguard 

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