BY ABAH ADAH, Abuja
Provision of Palliatives to artisanal miners to enable them recover from the adverse effect of the COVID-19 pandemic is now the focus of the federal government.
The Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Arc. Olamilekan Adegbite disclosed this during a photo exhibition highlighting his activities in celebration of his one year in office, put together by his Special Assistant on Documentation, Oluwadamilare Fawole (aka Drey), in Abuja.
Adegbite was accompanied to the venue by the Minister of State, Dr Uchechukwu Ogah, and some top management officials.
He said, “The ministry, in fulfilling its mandate, is focusing on the Economic Sustainable Plan (ESP) where we are trying to provide palliatives and direction for artisanal miners as a lot of them have been affected by the pandemic; they couldn’t go out to work to earn a living. So the government is making some fund available to help these people back on their feet.”
The Minister said the long term plan is to focus on the downstream subsector and ensure that raw minerals are no longer exported, but beneficiated and processed locally for the development of the value chain with a view to creating jobs, adding that an official policy on that will soon be launched.
On the photo show, the Minister who expressed delight after being taken round the gallery of his pictures at different local and foreign locations in the course of his duty which adorned the venue, enjoined youths in the country to emulate Dare by being creative.