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The PDP presidential candidate has a roboust and well thought plan to develop the mining sector so as to reduce federal and states dependency on crude oil.
Mr Charles Aniagwu, the spokesman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Presidential Campaign Council,
made the cheerful submission today while speaking on
“Focus Nigeria” on AIT Policy Dialogue with the theme “Ending Illegal Mining in Nigeria”, monitored in Asaba, the Delta State capital.

He said the PDP presidential candidate Alhaji Atiku Abubakar and his running mate Senator Ifeanyi Okowa
were very resolute that industrialisation and exploitation of mineral resources would be on top of economic agenda of their administration.
He said the economic blueprint makes room for colloboration between the federal and state governments to tap the mining sector for the benefits of all Nigerians.
He frowned at situation where an official in the Ministry of Solid Minerals sitting in Abuja and issuing minning
licences to an individual in a state without knowing the quantity of the particular mineral resource in the state..
Aniagwu explained :’
“In doing so, Atiku-Okowa recognised the provision of the Minerals Mining Act of 2007 particularly Chapter 1, Part 1 which states very clearly that ownership of solid minerals is vested in the Federal Government and this means the Federal Government is saddled with a whole lot of responsibilities including the implementation of the Act.

“But Atiku says that in doing that he is going to collaborate with states just as he has also said that he will devolve powers so that in granting licences to determine who should be involved in mining activities and how such products will be marketed, that the states should be carried along.

“It is not enough to collect royalties for licences without determining the quantity of deposits in that environment, Atiku said he would not operate like that because it will not give value to the Federation.

“Atiku believes that just the same way Petroleum products is giving us resources and helping us run our economy, the same way solid minerals should be able to play a very critical role and for that to happen, key stakeholders must be critically involved to perform their roles to ensure the success of the sector.

“When the states are involved, it will be easier to properly police the environment and deal with the issues of insecurity surrounding mining activities in the country.

“When the states are involved in registering or licencing those involved in mining activities ,it will be a win-win situation for the person mining, the states where the resources are deposited and the Federal Government that is vested with the ownership of the product,”

Aniagwu who is also the Delta State Information Commissioner observed that before the discovery of oil, Enugu used to be called the “Coal City”, Jos “Tin City” and Lokoja had a whole lot of iron deposits.
He said that Nigeria could benefit from these vast solid minerals deposit if correct data are taken of them and properly analyzed.
“Atiku-Okowa willing to implement the laws, bring in reforms such that at the end of the day the Federation is totally involved and not leaving it in the hands of the artisanal miners alone.

“Beyond the mining, Atiku will also bring industrialisation to the sector to ensure the country benefits from the entire solid minerals value-chain.

“All of these would be taken care of in the Atiku-Okowa Presidency by industrialising the sector and improve the nation’s earnings from the solid minerals industry.”
“Anybody who does not have a licence and who is not entitled to go into mining automatically will be treated as a thief,” he stated.

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