CSO intervention yielding sustainability in mining sector-consensus forum — Daily Times Nigeria

CSO intervention yielding sustainability in mining sector-consensus forum

mining

The intervention of the Civil Society Organisation in the mining sector in Ekiti State is already yielding results.

This among others were the submission of stakeholders during a consensus forum organised in Ado Ekiti which focussed on policy dialogue on mining security and the challenges of sustainability in Ekiti State on Thursday.

Some of the participants at the Dialogue who spoke on the state of mining in Ekiti State also commended the initiators of this, while the security operatives manning the mining sites in State who spoke at the forum warned illegal miners operating in the state to deceit from such act or they would be dealt with accordingly.

The Joint Task Force, JTF, also caution legal miners to operates with the law and the mining  Nigeria mining Act of 2007, so that orderliness, peace would be maintained in those areas.

Speaking at the one-day policy dialogue organised by African Centre for Leadership, Strategy, and Development,  Centre,
LSD, with the support of the Open Society Initiative for West Africa, OSIWA, urged miners in Ekiti State to properly organize themselves to doing mining right in the state.

In a communiqué issued at the end of policy dialogue on “mining security and  the challenges of sustainable mining in Ekiti State”, held at Delight Hotels, Ado-Ekiti, the participants recommended that
the Federal Government through the Ministry of Mines and Steel
Development should set up  action and inaugurate the already set up Mines Surveillance Task Force to enable them to effectively step up security  in  the mining zones.

Government were called upon to encourage miners in their business by
making access to fund easy through deliberate relaxation of loan conditions including the N5 billion loan scheme to small scale and artisanal miners.

“The government should check the excesses of illegal miners and ensure that uncovered mining pits are covered and properly reclaimed.

“Miners in Ekiti State should respect the spirit of CDAs entered into with the local communities by living up to their corporate social responsibilities and the terms of the CDAs.

“The government should prove its commitment to the development of the mining sector in the state by treating the nomination and constitution of the Mineral Resources and Environmental Management Committee, MIREMCO, as a matter of deliberate policy to have a say in the mineral
sector in the country.

“Mining stakeholders in Ekiti State should embrace professionalism by
making Community Development Agreement , CDA, and Memorandum of
Understanding, MOU, practice and procedure standardized and in line with best practice.

“Licensed operators should help to check the spate of environmental degradation in the mines by promptly reclaiming mining pits after the
conclusion of mining activities”.

Earlier, in his welcome address, the Programme Director, African
Centre for Leadership, Strategy & Development, Centre LSD, Mr. Monday Osasah, Nigeria operates as a single mining jurisdiction governed by the national constitution, which makes mining governance an exclusive preserve of the Federal Government.

According to him, this governance structure is seen as the biggest hindrance to the development of the solid minerals sector in Nigeria,
saying this had created unhealthy developments, such as illegal mining activities, poor revenue collections from mining operations and systemic hostility to private mining operators by states.

In his goodwill message, Ekiti State Coordinator, NESREA, Mr. Elijah Udofia,  said the agency has been able to develop regulations on mining activities and in 2012, trained artisanal miners on safety and equipped them with personal protective equipments in some of the states in the Federation, Ekiti inclusive.

The objective of the dialogue, the third in the series, was primarily
to provide a platform for interactions among citizens, policy makers and practitioners in Ekiti State and make suggestions to resolving the
issues militating against effective natural resources governance particularly from the security perspective.

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