By Mohammed Munirat Nasir, Gusau:
Zamfara State Commissioner for Environment and Solid Minerals Development, Dr Nuruddeen Isah vowed that any person caught engaging in illegal mining activities despite ban will be prosecuted.
Isah commissioner gave the threat when he visited the Sauna mining site following an allegation by a Zamfara based licensed miner, Alhaji Shamsudeen Sani Dahiru that the sole administrator of Talata Marafa local government area has trespassed into his site and currently engaging in illegal mining activities on the Sauna mining field.
The commissioner warned the people to as a matter of public importance to desist from engaging in mining activities in the state as federal government has banned all forms of mining in the state in the last 18 months.
Isah said no one has any right to claim over any area of mining, that is why he is at the Sauna mining site to enforce and ensure that nobody is in any of the sites.
“If anybody dare go to any mining site, the person will be arrested as stipulated by the law,” he said.
The commissioner assures that if mining ban is lifted by the federal government, all mining activities will be subjected to scrutiny to guard against it being used by bad elements in the state and outside the state.
“Another thing is that we also have a committee that is set up by the federal government to ensure that no one is going to any site without being authorised by both the state and the federal government,” he said.
Also speaking at the Sauna mining site, the Talata Mafara sole administrator, Alhaji Abubakar Musa said he brought in the security to stop illegal mining in the site.
“What I know is that there is illegal mining going on, when I heard from my district head, I then came to the site and see plenty people, that is why I gathered vigilantes and I called the state government to reenforce me with Mopol to stop the illegal mining,” he said.
The sole administrator expressed surprise at the allegations that he is engaging in illegal mining activities.
“I just heard that somebody saying that the sole administrator have come and took over his site. Being a Muslim, I am trying to maybe take action or leave him with God,” he said.
It will be recalled that the Zamfara based licensed miner, Alhaji Shamsudeen Sani Dahiru accused the sole administrator of illegal trespass into his mining site in Sauna village and carrying out mining activities.
Dahiru challenged the sole administrator to name the owner of the excavator and mining labourers who are currently carrying out illegal mining on the site despite the federal government’s ban on mining activities.
‘If it is not the sole administrator who brought the excavator and other mining equipment to the mining field, then the excavator and other equipment should be seized and the owner arrested and prosecuted, ” he said.
Dahiru urged the state government to as a matter of justice call on sole administrator to stop the illegality of trespass and carrying out mining activities.
Dahiru explained that his company Metro-bright Merchants Limited was given exploration license by the mining Cadastre office (federal ministry of mines and solid minerals development in 2017 and renewed in 2020.
“We have license but because of the ban on mining by the federal government, we are not doing anything on the field only for us to realize that the sole administrator is using his position to carry out illegal mining with the pretext of providing security,” he said.