Alake promises to probe suspected illegal mining in Benue

The Minister of Solid Minerals Development, Dr. Dele Alake, has said the Federal Government will investigate the alleged illegal mining operations in Benue State.
He also said those found culpable would face the full wrath of the law.

The minister spoke after listening to submissions from representatives of affected mining operators and relevant mines inspectorate officials from the state.

Some weeks ago, a video of 15 trucks laden with minerals suspected to be uranium and extracted from Kwande Local Government Area of Benue State went viral.

Following the posting of the video, Alake ordered discreet investigations by his ministry’s Mines Inspectorate.

The investigations reportedly revealed that the video was the result of inter-firm rivalry over the control of mining areas.

This prompted the minister to summon relevant stakeholders from the state to get the true picture of the situation.

After listening to all the submissions, Alake noted discrepancies in the accounts of the representatives of the communities, the operators, and the Mines Inspectorate officials.

The minister promised to ensure painstaking investigations and bring to book all those who have committed infractions and breached the nation’s laws on mining.

“I have listened to all submissions and noted discrepancies in the presentations by operators and stakeholders.

“We will thoroughly investigate all issues related to the incident. Any operator found culpable will have their licences 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,” Alake said.

<<The Nation>>