Nigerian government has revealed that the country can generate over a billion dollars from Artisanal Mining annually if more emphasis is given to the sector.
The country’s Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed disclosed this in an event organised to flag off the Presidential Artisanal Gold Mining Developments Initiative in Kebbi state, North west Nigeria.
The Minister said with this initiative, all Artisanal Miners in Nigeria would be registered through taking their biometric data, photograph, and addresses which he said will enable the government to support them in the Mining Industry.
Mohammed explained that doing so, will help to eradicate illegal miners and what ever gold mined will be bought by the Central Bank of Nigeria.
“What this means is that, we are going to register all Artisinal miners in Nigeria taking their bio-metric, taking their photograph, getting their addresses, and then federal government will now support them in the mining Industry“, he disclosed.
According to the information and culture minister, “ with this initiative, government is confident of making over a billion dollars in gold mining“.
He further hinted that, “this pilot programme will be in two states, that is in Osun and Kebbi state.
In Kebbi, we are going to register about three thousand Artisanal Miners through taking of their biometric and photograph and other details.
We have here with us the representative of the CBN, representative of the Mines and solid mineral ministry and the Executive Secretary of solid Mineral Fund is equally here today.
Earlier, His Royal Majesty, the Emir of Yauri in Kebbi state, Dr Mohammed Zayyanu Abdullahi commended government’s move to embark on the exploration and exportation of these mineral resources.
Dr Zayyanu urged both the federal and the states government, as well as well meaning entrepreneurs, to establish quasi industries towards the provisions of gainful employment for the teaming youths.
The royal father also appealed to the federal government to construct another Niger bridge on the River Niger from Zamare in Kebbi state across the river to Rofia in the Niger state.
This, he said would serve to provide for a short cut thoroughfare from the northwest to southwest of the country.
Dr Zayyanu added that the project, if undertaken, would greatly ease movement of goods and services between the northern and the southern parts of the country.