Prominent individuals in Nigeria implicated in unlawful mining and support of bandit activities, states Alake.


Minister of Solid Minerals Development, Dele Alake, has asserted that influential Nigerians are backing illegal mining and fostering banditry. During his appearance before the House Committee on Solid Minerals to justify the Ministry’s 2024 budget proposal, Alake revealed that these powerful individuals are linked to the insecurity prevalent in regions abundant in solid mineral resources. He emphasized that the government is actively identifying these individuals and is committed to taking appropriate actions against them. The objective is to secure these areas for potential investors interested in the country’s solid minerals sector.

Alake stated, “We’ve discovered that much of the insecurity and banditry associated with this sector are funded by illegal miners. These are not small-scale artisan miners; they are influential figures within our nation, not foreign entities. While foreign involvement may be apparent, Nigerians are the driving force behind these external actors. We are currently pinpointing these individuals and employing a range of strategies, both kinetic and non-kinetic.”

Regarding non-kinetic strategies, Alake explained, “I’ve given an ultimatum to artisan miners to organize themselves into cooperatives. Every Nigerian has a right to life and basic necessities, and if the government cannot provide these essentials, we cannot force them into the wilderness.”

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