In a concerted effort to increase revenue generation in the Minerals and Metals Sector, the Federal Government is partnering with State Governments to curb illegal mining of solid minerals across the country.
Speaking during a courtesy visit to Enugu State Governor, His Excellency, Hon. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, the Minister of State, Mines and Steel Development, Dr. Uchechukwu Sampson Ogah, said President Muhammadu Buhari has approved 13% derivation on solid minerals mining as in the oil sector, as such there should be collaboration between the Federal and State Governments in order to close up all leakages to be able to derive better revenue generation in the sector.
Ogah noted that if the abundance of minerals in the country, including coal which is found in great quantity in Enugu, are properly harnessed, it would help achieve the Federal Government’s effort towards diversifying the economy.
He said that mechanism is being put in place towards tracking and monitoring minerals exploited, as well as revenues collected are accounted for and paid into the right government account.
He therefore called for cooperation of the governors, saying that doing this would fast track the growth of the economy, create employment and increase the Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
According to him, government is working on a policy that would curb activities of illegal mining in the country. The policy would ensure the monitoring and tagging of minerals mined and their movement. This would assist in curbing illegal mining, and to boost the drive of creating employment and lifting Nigerians out of poverty, he said.
In his remarks, the Governor assured of the state’s willingness to partner with the Ministry in the effort to generate revenue through minerals mining.
He disclosed that Enugu with its abundance of coal, has not witnessed any meaningful mining activity for years; adding that the people would be happy to see the state return to the days when Enugu was truly the Coal City.