By Mohammed Munirat Nasir, Gusau
A private mining firm in Zamfara state has petitioned the Nigeria Police and a younger brother of the state governor for illegal trespass on his approved mining site at Tungar Lada village in Talata-Mafara local government area.
According to the managing Director, Shamsudeen Dahiru Gusau, said the company, Inta General Enterprise took the step as it has all documents to authenticate its rights to the facility and engage in exploration and small scale mining activities.
In his words ” We applied for permission to mobilize to site on 7th April, 2017 and the application was granted on 2nd May, 2017. In preparation to mobilizing to site, the company wrote to Commissioner of Police, Zamfara State requesting for security personal dated 6th May, 2017 which was acknowledged on 8th May, 2017. Also same request was sent to the Civil Defence through the HOD Mining Division of the Command”.
“While still preparing to move to site, on 11th May, 2017, the Zamfara state Commander of Mopol, in person of Sani Doki invited us to site where he told us that His Excellency, the Executive Governor of Zamfara State, Alhaji Abdul’Aziz Yari Abubakar ordered him to come and take over from the licensed company and warned us from coming close to the site,”
Shamsudeen added while the company was waiting for further directives from the government as promised by Sani Doki, the Mopol commander, what the company discovered was that the younger brother of the governor has taken over the site.
” On 12th May, 2017, We just heard that some containers, roofing sheets, wood other equipment have been mobilized to site which is under the control of the Mopol and that mining activities has commenced and exploring of resources on the site is still on till date. The activities is being led by the younger brother of the Governor in person of Jafaru Abubakar Yari popularly known as Dan- Awuta,” he alleged.
The petition dated 15/5/2017 titled ‘Complain of illegal and wrongful interference with mining right and trespass to mining site of Inta General Enterprises Ltd, against OC Mobile Police of Zamfara state, Sani Doki and Jafaru Dankunya Auta Abubakar Yari ‘
The document was also copied to relevant authorities including the Inspector-General of Police and the President, Nigeria Mining Association among others.
While responding to the petition, the state commissioner of Environment and Solid Mineral Development, Alhaji Idris Keta said the state government will close down all mining sites existing in the state ahead of new mining policies to be introduced through a partnership with the federal government.
He said, although high powered delegation would be in Abuja this week to discuss the matter, the state government had already taken steps with the closure of the mining sites as part of the beginning of the new modalities.
He said, “we know that the issuance of mining rights and licenses is a federal government reserve, but we also expect that we should be informed and be in the clear whenever such activities like mining are talking place in our jurisdiction. “