FG unveils additional 350 operatives to boost mining marshals

The Minister of Solid Minerals Development, Dr Dele Alake has declared that the deployment of 350 additional operatives to the mining marshals underscores the federal government’s commitment to reforming the mining sector.

Speaking at the passing out parade for the new operatives at the NSCDC headquarters, the minister represented by the Permanent Secretary, Dr. Mary Ogbe lauded his interior counterpart, Dr. Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo, and the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) for their collaboration in combating illegal mining.

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A statement by the special assistant to the Minister, Segun Tomori, while highlighting the successes recorded by the mining marshals, the minister noted that their efforts have significantly reduced illegal mineral haulage and the activities of unlicensed operators nationwide.

It will be recalled that since the inauguration of the first batch of 2,220 mining marshals, over 200 illegal mining suspects have been arrested, with 133 prosecutions underway, and confiscated illegally mined minerals, forfeited to the federal government.

“Today’s Passing Out Parade of the second batch will further increase our numbers, ensuring wider coverage and enhancing the operational effectiveness of the squad. As we integrate and improve collaboration between mining marshals and Federal Mines Officers (FMO) across the country, we aim to intensify sector sanitization and boost investor confidence, leading to increased investments and development in the mining industry,” Alake stated.

In his remarks, NSCDC Commandant-General, Dr. Abubakar Audi revealed that the new operatives underwent an intensive 8-week training program, preparing them to strengthen the mining marshals’ operations and intensify efforts against illegal miners nationwide.

The Minister of Interior, Dr Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo, addressing the newly inducted marshals, emphasized that the mining marshals are a product of successful collaboration between the Ministry of Solid Minerals Development and the Ministry of Interior.

He highlighted the need for continued training and deployment to ensure comprehensive coverage of the country’s vast mining areas and to maximize the benefits derived from solid minerals.

“The progress made so far exemplifies effective collaboration. With this second batch, we have more personnel on the ground, but we must continue training and deploying to protect our mining areas and ensure our nation reaps the full benefits of its solid minerals, for economic development,” Tunji-Ojo added.

The induction of the new operatives brings the total number of specially trained and kitted mining marshals deployed nationwide to 2,570.


Tribune Online