Niger State governor, Alhaji Abubakar Sani Bello has announced the immediate suspension of all mining in some parts of the state.
A statement yesterday in Minna quoted the secretary to the state government, Ahmed Ibrahim Matane, to have said mining and all related activities were suspended in Gurmana, Shiroro Local Government Area, Anguwan Kampani, M.I. Wushishi Housing Estate, College of Education, Army Barracks and Lapan-Gwari in Chanchaga Local Government Area of the state.
Matane said the decision to suspend mining became necessary following security, health, environmental hazards and the illicit drug peddling in the areas listed.
While saying it posed threat to the health and security of the people, he explained that the suspension of mining in the areas mentioned followed report that clearly established a strong and glaring nexus between the activities of bandits, prostitution, gangsterism and illegal miners with both mutually re-enforcing each other.
The statement further warned that any mining operator caught engaging in the activities in the areas mentioned would face the full wrath of the law.
“The present administration in the state is leaving no stone unturned in fashioning out strategies that will bring lasting solution as well as forestall any breach of security in the state’’ he said.
The SSG noted that the development had necessitated the need for the people to be security conscious and report all suspicious characters, movements or objects in their communities to security agents.
He reiterated that the current administration under the leadership of Governor Abubakar Sani Bello would make the state a model in the mining sector for others to emulate, by creating employment and wealth in an atmosphere of peace and tranquillity.
The SSG also appealed for the cooperation of the Nigeria Mining Association in the state, local communities, especially traditional and religious leaders within the communities where mining activities are taking place so as to rid the state of criminal elements.