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Gov. Alia Inaugurates Mining Marshals In Benue

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Gov. Alia Inaugurates Mining Marshals In Benue

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Benue Governor, Hyacinth Alia, on Friday inaugurated 30-man mining marshals to curb illegal mining of solid minerals across the State.

Alia, who was represented by his deputy, Dr Sam Ode, performed the inauguration at the Government House, Makurdi.

The governor said that the marshals would collaborate with the Mineral Resources and Environment Management Committee (MIREMCO) in performing their duties.

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He explained that the initiative was aimed at improving the state revenue generation and security.

The governor said the marshals would ensure the interest of Benue government and people are protected, especially by checking illegal mining activities and helping to increase revenue through mining.

“Work in conjunction with MIREMCO in promoting, projecting and defending the interests of our people against illegal mining activities,’’ he said.

He also advised the body to work with the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) to combat illegal mining activities.

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Alia said his administration would not tolerate any illegality that impedes the development of the state.

“Your efforts should be to ensure the actualisation of a better Benue, noting that the development of the state is a daunting task for everyone.

“What is required at this time is a resourceful and visionary leadership and committed followership,’’ he said.

Alia said that his administration had articulated a blueprint for the development of the area, saying with the people’s support, transformation of the state is achievable.

He also told the marshals that it was their responsibilities to check the activities of illegal refinery operators.

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The governor announced that currently all mining activities are suspended, pending the completion of data collation by the Miners Association in the state.

Mr Fidelis Mnyim, Chairman of MIREMCO, said 34 out of the country’s 47 mineral resources are found in the state.

Mnyim, who doubles as the Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice/Public Order, said the main objective of the mining marshals was to protect lives and property as well as to raise revenue for the state.

He said the activities of the illegal miners were adversely affecting the state’s IGR, causing deaths and environmental degradation.

“The two major Rivers in the state `Kwande and Vandiekya’ are already damaged because of the activities of illegal miners,’’ he said.

Also speaking, Mrs Adijetu Usuman, Assistant Director, Geology, Federal Ministry of Mines and Solid Minerals, and the Co-ordinator of MIREMCO commended the governor for his interest in mining.

Responding on behalf of Benue Mining Marshals, the Commander, Adegbe Ibrahim, assured that the group would do its best in serving the state.

 

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