Home > Library > NESTEC Paper: Encouraging Cassiterite Mining By Artisans; A Way Forward For Economic Development In Nigeria

NESTEC Paper: Encouraging Cassiterite Mining By Artisans; A Way Forward For Economic Development In Nigeria

Abstract

Artisanal Mining of cassiterite is one tedious activity that is carried out daily. It involves daily extraction of economic mineral deposit through the use of primitive tools like shovel, digger, spade etc. The continuous extractive act by these artisans tend not to bother the Government of Nigeria and as such, there is no detailed record that collates the quantity of cassiterite mined and processed per day. The Industrialization of any nation cannot be complete until her iron and steel industry is fully developed and this can come to light if the Government see the need to encourage miners in the country. Metallic mineral deposits are located in different parts of the country. For instance, Cassiterite (Tin), Tantalite, Columbite (Niobium),Zircon, Ilmenite, Wolframite are buried in the bowels of Plateau State, Nasarawa State, Kaduna State etc. This research aims to bring solutions that would play a decisive role in developing and adapting metallurgical processes for component production of steel and other engineering alloys from products of these artisans thereby creating a job for the unemployed and also boosting the nation’s economy. With this in view, contributions from Material Engineers shall lead to Component Production in Nigeria.

Keywords: Artisanal Miners, Cassiterite, Industrialization, Component production, Metallurgy, Alloys, Metallic minerals

Author: Ebikemefa Ebimobowei Clinton

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NESTEC Paper

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247 thoughts on “NESTEC Paper: Encouraging Cassiterite Mining By Artisans; A Way Forward For Economic Development In Nigeria

  1. It is high time the government look into this field of cassiterite mining because there is lot of money in it and i do believe that with great contribution from this sector, the economy of Nigeria will grow better. Great job author

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      1. Very well detailed and outlined… I do hope for the best implementation. Good article brother… Greater heights

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  2. Clinton!!… Nice work!!!, please keep making us proud. I’m so impressed with this piece. Can Nigerians go back to mining activities obviously, mining will greatly boost the economy of the country.

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    1. Thanks alot Oguntade. Indeed the country need to go back to how it was when Nigeria was rated the highest producer of Columbite. With this in view, Nigeria has the chances of reviving the industrial sector again. Thanks Bro

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    1. Thanks alot Mr Ernest God’swill because this is indeed is a very good question though it was captured in both the scope and the material and methods of the work. If you read the abstract well, you will notice that the artisans already have a work doing because they are involved in Tin mining and it is indeed a lucrative business because through it, the artisans get money to feed themselves and even that of their family but the major issue is the involvement of the government.
      If the government get involved, the following things are bound to happen:
      1. The use of mechanized tools in place of the primitive tools which will further increase production.
      2. Through this, milling industries will be at work again thus making the issue of employment solved

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  3. Good work sir…. This will really help in boasting employment and bring awareness to the awesome job done by this old ladies using calabash and brooms , hence providing the necessary mechanisation to make it easier and safer

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    1. Very true. Mechanized mining method is the best method to be adopted but this can be made possible when the Government intervene just as stated in the abstract. Thanks for your contribution

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  4. This is an interesting piece..I like the fact that this aspect is being addressed by u..Do we really need the government to intervene?

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    1. The government should start by ensuring that the various artisans form cooperatives that will be monitored at the state and also at the federal government level. Also, the government should also create a data base that will help in collating and also monitoring the various bags of cassiterite that is mined per day. With this, there would be a better understanding of the amount of cassiterite that is mined in each state of the federation where the mineral deposit is found. This in turn when exported which can be exchanged for foreign currency.

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  5. Nice work sir clinton.. you mentioned in your work about the primitive methods being used, are there no modern methods adapted for better minnig of these mineral??

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    1. There are mechanized mining method that can be used but this can be made possible when the government come into play. Certain mechanism method are the use of mechanized hoisting system instead of the local winch hoisting system, the underground mining system with a better shaft system instead of the locally made lotto pit. Thanks for your contributions.

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  6. Indeed, it will make Nigeria a great Nation again and also, the use of primitive tools will become a story because certain incentives will be brought to the table by the Government as this will further help the artisans to be able to for groups or cooperatives just the way it is done in the agricultural sector. With this in place, the government will be able to monitor their activities and also, there would be a much more safer mining practice done since the government is involved.

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  7. Nice work Mr Clinton but i do have questions to ask you.
    1. How many bags do these artisanal miners get per day?
    2. How much is each of the bags sold?
    3. Did you conduct this work yourself and where is your area of study?

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    1. 1. The total number of bags they get per hole is 4 bags at maximum.
      2. The price of each processed bag of Tin using 2006 price rate is 8000 per bag which means they are making the sum of 32000 per day. Imagine when the government come into the sector to further improve it,
      3. I did the work myself and i visited a place called Bisichi (KaraII) and Kuru-Jentar all in Plateau State. I got my findings and data from there. Thanks

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  8. This is indeed a good work Mr Clinton. I think this will go a long way if the government get involved. Thanks

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    1. I really do think that the government we have is a listening government and as such, we will continue to cry out until something meaningful is done.The current administration has promised to look into the mining sector of Nigeria and i do believe that when materials like this are written, it will definitely lead them aright to do the right thing. Thanks.

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    1. Indeed the government need to see reasons to look into this sector of mining. That is why this paper is written so that it can draw the attention of the government and other agencies because this is indeed a good one for our economy.

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  9. I do hope that the government look into things like this because the economy is dying by the day and this will be another way of reviving it if it is done the right way following what your paper has stated. Nice job

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  10. What more can be said if not what your paper has covered in the abstract. We need the industries to be working again and i must say that this paper is timely.

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  11. This is a very relevant topic of discussion especially being that Nigeria is a country that requires a serious business minded leadership if we are to unveil earths treasure. Support to artisanal miners will bring order and sustainable mining that will generate mineral wealth and sustainable economic development. However, what perception do the artisans have concerning the proper organization of cassiterite mining in Nigeria? Also, how can the solid mineral sector be further established to ensure maximum business opportunities in the sector for the artisans?

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  12. Thanks alot Kereen Amuga. An Artisanal Miner is one that is uneducated and as such, he is very limited to information. He mines based on the information that he gathers or get from people probably what his fore-fathers, friends and others have told him. He is not well informed about certain things related to the sector of solid mineral in Nigeria and that is why this paper is out to address the issue soliciting that the government come around to integrate the sector by developing cooperatives, registered groups etc
    Also, the solid mineral sector can be further established when the government decide to look away from the dwindling capital we get from the oil and gas sector and put more focus into the mining sector just the way much has been said and done on the agricultural sector in Nigeria. In the year 1933-1945, Nigeria was rated the highest producer of Columbite and 2nd producer of Tin. If the government can bring in certain favorable policies, it will bring back our glory again. Thanks

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  13. Aside providing the artisans with mechanized tools, I think the government can further establish the sector by facilitating the process of selling cassiterite at a valued price for the artisans.

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    1. Nice comment indeed. The fact is that theses artisanal miners are exploited daily by the middle men because they know that they are uneducated and this is the more reason why the government have to intervene so that they create a convenient market for them where they can sell their materials without having to go through the middle men. Thanks for your lovely comment.

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  14. nice work by Clinton. artisan mining can actually be starting point for any form of mining such as providing explorational knowledge to large scale miners among many other benefits. and therefore i recommend the government to look into this matter serious so as to promote this sector of the economy. tanks for this platform of knowledge was again Mr Clinton

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    1. Thanks alot Mr Obams for your view because it is indeed very impressive. I must say that you see what i am saying from same dimension of view.

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  15. This is indeed an eye opener. I hope the government will see the need to assist the artisans so as to improve the economy of the country. Nice paper you have here

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  16. Thank you so much Patience. I saw your post and i appreciate your kind gesture. I believe that this paper would awaken the federal government.

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  17. An impressive write up. Much have been said in the abstract and i do believe that the Government will rise to her feet.

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  18. A good work indeed. How wonderful it will be for the government to look into this paper. It will be a whole lot of benefits to the government, mining artisans and also helps to boost the economic sector.
    I really do commend on your work Clinton. Bravo!!!

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  19. This topic is relevant and will go a long way in developing the country’s economic.God bless you work God bless nigeria

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  20. Indeed, we believe that the government will rise to her feet judging from the dwindling nature of the economy. It is high time the government explore other options other than the oil and gas sector.

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  21. Nice contribution to knowledge. I do believe that with more of this kind of write up, there would be positive change in Nigeria

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    1. Countries like Ghana, South Africa and others use this means of solid mining to generate funds for themselves. The Diamond Mine in South Africa is one revolutionary trend that helped South Africa and this mining practice was not done by robots but by artisanal miners. If we wake up the sector of mining, Nigeria will become great again through Mining. Thanks

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    1. Well this paper is out to open the eyes of the government and also to make them know that we can have another way of getting Internally Generated Revenue without going about increasing taxes alone. Indeed Nigeria is blessed and we must use this sector to help ourselves. Thanks

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    1. Indeed Adejumo. It is high time the government realise that the artisans are very needful in economic development. Thanks

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  22. I found this research work interesting and commendable, believing the paper will draw the attention of the Federal government into the minning sector with a decisive action plan in developing a viable economy for our people and our nation. I therefore, admonish the government to queue into Clinton’s recommendations and provide mechanized minning equipment for the artisan.Lastly,in your views how can minning Engineers help the government to improve this sector if employed as a monitoring agent?

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  23. I really do appreciate the fact that you made this loud statement as regards the government looking at what i have proposed. To answer your question, i want you to know that the Mining Engineers are the sole regulators as long as mining is concerned because they have been trained and they know how to approach the issue of mining such that it can be done the right way without having to affect or disturb the comfort of the people around.
    The Mining Engineers will help in the following ways:
    1. They would help by teaching the artisanal miners how to mine in a more better way such that it is environmentally friendly and as such, safety becomes the order of the day.
    2. Proper collation of what is mined per day and also yearly will become a source of Internally Generated Revenue for the nation and this will go a long way in ensuring that the economy of the nation is further boosted instead of its present dwindling state.
    3. Artisans will also benefit from the is program because they can assess certain funds through this various cooperatives and also, they can now go into mechanized mining instead of the primitive method they are used to and this will further help in increasing productivity.

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  24. My able engineer in the making,your reponse to my question shows clearly your vast knowledge of the research gear towards providing solutions to the artisans as well as the government.

    Item one of your answer will solve mortality rate of the artisan whom are already use to the primitive way of minning.
    Item two will help to solve issue of middle men in the sector.

    Hope to witness the implementation of this paper for the socia economic growth of our country as well as the hard working artisans.

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    1. I am humbled by your loud comments and i hope too that the government look into the various stated points in the paper because it is very important in the economic development of the nation. Thanks a lot for all your comments

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  25. Indeed its an awesome piece.
    How Can a trained miner( graduate from mining engineering) help in actualizing this great idea even without the fiscal support of the government?

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  26. Thanks alot for your question. I am glad you made mention of the term trained miner and also specify the fact he/she is just coming out of the University of learning. Such a one may not have so much to give based on the idea of professional idea and that is why we have ministries such as the Ministry of Mines and Steel, various milling industries and also, various programs that can help to further educate him beyond the shores of academic learning into professional maturity.
    Also, he can serve as an agent who can institute the possible collation of data because his academic understanding of statistics will be highly needed in such collation. Thanks

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  27. Columbite is an important component of our gadgets (mobile phone, laptop, TV etc.), and we have much of it in the Northern part of the country. If the government can look into its mining and create a suitable market for it, it’ll be a good one. Because not only would it improve the economy, but also improve technology advancement of the country.

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    1. Very true, Columbite is indeed a very useful and economical mineral just as much as Tantalite, Tin and others. They all add up to making a nation a producing one instead of just a consuming nation. Thanks a lot

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  28. Much have been said on this platform and i do really appreciate all your contributions. More of such suggestion and idea is needed for better progress.

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  29. Wow..is this for real?I was so amazed to see creative plateform as this..nice work and initiative sir.. With people like you we have hope in this country lol.keep up the good work

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  30. Great article Clinton… I believe if the methods of artisanal mining are improved and developed then the artisanal miners will have an increased productivity, more income, less fatigue and of course this will have a positive impact on the Nigerian economy

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  31. Is a very nice work and artisanal mining in Plateau State has helped in the development and growth of most artisanal miners. To this regards, The plateau State Government and the Federal government need to show more concern on the mining sector.

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  32. Indeed, the artisanal miners are the brain to every developed country because all he needed material is mined by them. Thanks

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  33. Permit me to ask you this few questions:
    1. What are alloys because i saw it under your key words?
    2. Explain the term metallic minerals

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  34. Thank you for this great question. i shall answer them sequentially :
    1. An alloy may be viewed from different perspective depending on the discipline but under Material Engineering, an Alloy is defined as what you add up to a material either to increase the strength or for the purpose of coating the material from either rust or corrosion. Tin is a very good material that is an alloy when it is smelted. It can be used to alloy another substance or material in order to increase or coat the substance.
    2. A metallic mineral is defined as a mineral that contains metallic properties in them ,. you know this mineral by their ability to trap certain metals. Example of such mineral is Cassiterite because it contains in it Iron, Ilmenite, Magnitite and others, Cassiterite has its associate ore which i have named out. Thanks

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  35. Thanks alot Mr Matawal. I do hope and pray that the Government look into this paper so that all the points that are spelt out will be a source of generating funds for the nation.

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  36. wow,nice work done here!I really don’t know,how possible it is, but if the government can take a look at this article,and others like this,then they would be able to impact more in the mineral sector,to foster the economy…Kudos

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  37. Yes its really a thing of consideration that government need to take into account. as such will curtail the rate of employment in the nation at large.

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  38. The current method used in the mining and extraction of cassarite on the study area is not hazardous to the health of the mines but also degrades the environment (immediate) the mining is taking.
    Considering the price of the products (tin and columbite) and quantity being extracted by Miners per pit per day, it is indeed a rewarding venture compared to the N-power scheme and the embattled minimum wage.
    Encouraging this by the government and NGOs by providing equipment and alternative methods of extraction that is both safe and environmental friendly will not only increase their yield but at the same time protect the Miners and the environment.

    My question: What are the ways our present government can accept this proposal?

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  39. Edited: The current method used in the mining and extraction of cassarite on the study area is hazardous to the health of the Miners but also degrades the environment.
    Considering the price of the products (tin and columbite) and quantity being extracted by Miners per pit per day, it is indeed a rewarding venture compared to the N-power scheme and the embattled minimum wage.
    Encouraging this by the government and NGOs by providing equipment and alternative methods of extraction that is both safe and environmental friendly will not only increase their yield but at the same time protect the Miners and the environment.

    My question: What are the ways our present government can accept this proposal?

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    1. Well the first thing which must be done is the fact that materials like this should published on different publishing sites just like this one and also, the presentation of materials like this should be done on different platform such as Engineering Forum, Conferences etc.
      This material intentionally looked at the rudimentary nature of the artisans to make the government and other NGo’s know that if such amount of 4 bags can be produced from each pit , how much more if the government come into light to help them with finance and also mechanized means. This paper also bring out the economic importance of the government coming into the mining sector.
      You should also know that the reason behind the hazardous nature of their practice is because these artisans are illiterates and they have very little knowledge of how to mine safely but if the government and other bodies concerned come into the field, they would be better educational programs which will be given to them to make them know how to mine safely without exposing themselves to the hands of death.Thanks

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  40. It is really a nice publication and it will be good if the government look into this paper and effect its comments so that young Mining Engineers that want to venture in Mining as a profession would feel encouraged.

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    1. Thanks alot Mr Stephen. I do believe that the present Government judging from their recent concerns will do more than what we have seen. The minister of Mines and Steel Development (Arc Olamilekan Adegbite) disclosed that about 2.5 billion naira has been provided for artisanal mining activities. This is indeed a good news and i believe more will come into light.

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  41. We hope that the government look into materials like this so that the economy of the nation can be transformed for the better. We must start becoming a producing nation and not just a consuming nation.

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  42. Nice work Mr Clinton, the paper has the potential to reduce unemployment to the various minimum in the society if the government and the private sector can look into it.

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    1. There are lots of metallurgical processes starting from the crushing and grinding to concentration of the ore, calcination and reduction processes but the most efficient method used for the beneficiation of cassiterite is using either magnetic separator or an air float machine.
      You use a magnetic machine because you want to separate all the magnetic minerals in the cassiterite. Minerals like ilmenite, magnetite etc but you make use of the air float when you ewant to separete the minerals bvased on their differences in density. Like separate Wolframite, Silica, Columbite etc.

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  43. I found this work interesting especially in addressing key issues that when properly look into, will facilitate profitable exploration of these resources as well as ensure human capital development at the grassroot thereby revitalizing the industrial sector. It will also safe lives of potential victims of mining harzards that defines the existing status quo. Thus, being part of a community where these crook mining activities is the order of the day, I believe this research is timely as it will accelerates the process of reclaiming locally wasted land as well as educate those involved.

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    1. The depth of the pits are varies. Some are 30ft while others are up to 50ft but most of the pits in the places are visited are 30ft.
      Yes i did get samples and in the body of this paper, coordinates were taken which i use in potting the map of the area i visited. Thanks

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  44. The depth of the pits are varies. Some are 30ft while others are up to 50ft but most of the pits in the places are visited are 30ft.
    Yes i did get samples and in the body of this paper, coordinates were taken which i use in potting the map of the area i visited. Thanks

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  45. This nation needs innovative thinkers like you. Indeed the government should do more than what they have done in the past. Nice work.

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  46. Nice
    Navigating through your work
    I discovered you did not recognise the dangers of heavy mining.
    Natural disasters such as earth quake and landslide could erupt here.
    Though your paper is good but we must not concentrate on the gain and forget the consequences
    My opinion

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    1. Very true Mr Iheme. I am so very happy that you stated the fact that heavy metals has been a very serious issue and that is why it is called artisanal mining. Just as i stated in the abstract, it is a mining activity that is very tedious meaning, it is done with the use of primitive tools and the strength of man. They are artisans and that is why they use crude method in their mining practice but if the government come into light which is the major focus of discuss, better mining option will be employed such as the use mechanized tools for mining, environmentally friendly mining will be adopted, better support systems will be used instead of the locally used support systems that has constantly lead to the death of the miners. With all these benefits, it will be a three way thing in the sense that the artisanal miners are safe , productivity is high and finally, the economy of Nigeria is great again. Thanks

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  47. Mr Iheme, i believe you were refering to heavy metals and not heavy mining but all the same, the Government intervention will make mining much more environmentally friendly than what is been practiced by the artisanal miners. Thanks

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  48. Mr Iheme, i believe you were referring to heavy metals and not heavy mining but all the same, the Government intervention will make mining much more environmentally friendly than what is been practiced by the artisanal miners. Thanks

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  49. You’re on the right path Clinton. One of the cardinal agenda of the present government is to diversify economy and to create jobs. Your research has given a clue on the areas to explore by the government.

    It’s going to be a win win situation for the miners and the government if it can be harnessed.

    Welldone guy!

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  50. well as much as id want to praise your job, ill still need to question some aspects

    You made mining look as if its so much easy and hazard free, i guess a good essay as this lacking limitations and dangers of mining is not so appropriate sir.

    Then i beg to ask, just like oil, one day we will get deficient of those mineral resources and when where do we turn to?

    mining itself has dangers both natural and artificial, we have sabotages always ready to strike at the right time. Your essay did not state the routes taken to ensure a state of free and clear mining

    ITs a very good one and i hope the Government someday will look into it and save us from over dependence of oil which tends to sprout out in every sector oof the economy

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  51. Thanks alot for your comment and question. I must say say that i am a Mining Engineer in the making and the fact remains that a well carried out Geological Survey with all the needed Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) makes the profession of mining so easy and enjoying.
    Straight to your question: Every abstract written is a pointer to the topic or the subject of discuss and that is why one abstract does differ from another. In as much as mining activity does have hazardous issues which i do know but you still will agree with me that most of the hazards are due to failure to adhere to certain rule or standard that should have been put into place.
    I must do well to remind you again that the topic states ” Encouraging Cassiterite Mining By Artisans; A way forward for Economic Development”. With such a topic at hand, you definitely would be expecting to see an abstract that buttresses more on the need for the government to intervene in ensuring that the mining sector is hugely revived but in same vein, i did explain earlier to one of the questions asked that with the presence of the Government and other concerned bodies coming into play, there would definitely be workshops, programs and training’s that will be out in place to further educate these artisanal miners on better way of mining in a safe and healthy environment. Also, a proper mechanized approach will be introduced to further help in reducing the much stress and strength that they exert in the bit to mine the minerals from the sub-surface of he earth. Mining is indeed a very lucrative profession if done the right way with the right precautions attached. Countries like China, South Africa, Australia and others are deeply depending on Mining activity and it has heavily affected their economy such that hey are doing very well. Nigeria can definitely get to her feet again if the right approach is applied. Thanks

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    1. Then i beg to ask, just like oil, one day we will get deficient of those mineral resources and when where do we turn to?

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  52. Nice question brother. I worked on this paper is for two reasons:
    1. To open the eyes of the government and other concerned bodies that the mining sector is indeed a very lucrative one which will definitely turn the economy around.
    2. To make them know that through Mining, our industries can come alive again.
    To answer your question: Minerals are actually non-renewable but their formation is also so irresistible. Minerals form after a period of accumulation. As a geologist, we say that it forms in millions of years. It will amaze you to know that we are yet to tap 30% of what we have in the earth. What we ave been doing is scavenging for minerals that are just at certain depth (Surface Mining). Th mining Sector is meant to be a strong supportive system in as much as we have other sectors running in the Country but it can be a major booster to the economy. The mining of Diamond in South Africa started way back in 1870s but Diamond has not finished in South Africa. We still have so much yet to be mined. Yes, other sectors like Agriculture, Oil and Gas will definitely still be in the pipeline of activity just as well as the active Mining Sector. Thanks.

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  53. The country is so bless with a lot of mineral-base resources but everyone’s attention is on oil,which is even on the decline as the day passes by..I wish the government and corporate bodies can start exploring on other minerals like this cassiterite available in the country…nice piece of work Clinton.

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  54. Thanks Clinton for bringing our attention to this, it would be great if the government could look into this,it cannot be over emphasised that Nigeria is so blessed with natural resources of which this is one, which can help when properly managed to reduce poverty.

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  55. This is indeed a very good abstract. We have lot of this mineral deposit in my state and we still cry of poverty. Nice job Clinton

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    1. My study area is at Bischi (Kara II) and Kuru-Jentar in Plateau State. I took samples and has serious discussion with the artisanal miners on site.

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  56. We have so much of this Tin mining my community here in Jos. Many of my friends that are not even in school are making so much money from it. Nice work here.

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  57. Wow! I just saw this abstract and it caught my attention. Tin mining is big money and i know the government will have so much from this. No more borrowing from world bank.

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    1. Cassiterite is a Tin ore mineral deposit. It has other associated minerals took like Columbite Tantalite etc.

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    1. Indeed, we expect more from the government and from the look of things, the government is making serious of promises that we pray will come to pass .

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  58. Your work highlights some important aspects in the extraction of metals/precious materials from its ore.

    Well done. I still have some questions because I was confused at some point:

    can you explain why Nigeria was ranked 2nd and 6th of world’s Tin producer using the same data. Check your introduction and section 1.2 of your work.

    Is metallurgy, per say, actually the process used for extracting metals in their pure form from their ore? I think you need to recast this statement.

    What’s is your say to this: should artisanal mining be encouraged because there is no enough job in Nigeria or because of the valuable materials obtained from the process.

    If it is because there is no enough good paying jobs, how would you feel when you tell someone you are an artisan that mine minerals?

    On the other hand, if it is because of the value of the materials obtained, do you think it would be able to sustain the supply chain if for instance, the Ajaokuta steel complex kicks off?

    Do you think mining per say is sustainable? According to global definition of sustainability, if it is not why should we encourage artisanal mining?

    I doubt but, do you think focusing on artisanal mining first without revitalizing the dead Mills, owned by the federal government of Nigeria, would be a great idea for boostering the economy?

    And don’t you think the business of mining has a lot to do with your certificate? ceteris paribus, how can someone with bad certificate do a proper geological survey in the mine site?
    How can you express the technical terms and ideas associated with mining?

    Your response would be highly appreciated, thank you!

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  59. I do want to start by thanking you Mr Eze for asking such a very sensitive question because they all border on the field of mining and also on the paper written.
    1. Deep and proper mining started as a result of the presence of the colonial masters that came around. their presence actually made us understand the fact that we had precious minerals, base metals and other mineral deposit deep in the surface of the earth. Our fore fathers were actually used for the purpose of deep mining of these minerals most especially Tin which is a good example of a base metal . A base Metal because it was the basis for Industrial revolution as at the time. These minerals were transported outside the shores of Nigeria for the purpose of Industrialization. Other base metal include Lead, nickel, copper etc.
    Jos Plateau was one powerful pillar that was used in the excavation of this Tin mineral. With this excessive mining practice coming from Nigeria, Nigeria was ranked the highest exporter of Columbite and the 6th exporter of Tin because about 95% of the consumption of the minerals were from Nigeria as at the time. All this happen between the period of 1905-1972.
    2. The definition i gave for Metallurgy isn’t just the extraction of metals from their ore. I also said that Metallurgy is defined as a materials and engineering practice that studies the physical and chemical behavior of metallic elements, their inter-metallic compounds, and their mixtures which are called alloys. Under Materials and Metallurgical Engineering, metallurgy has to do with the process of getting metals in their raw form form their ores. The definition was given based on the disciple\ine with which i represent i.e Materials and Metallurgical Engineering or Mining Engineering.
    3. Artisanal Mining should be encouraged because of the following reasons;
    (i) Job creation – Even in places like china, we have artisanal miners because that help them to be able to get something doing irrespective of whether a white collar job is there or not. Artisana mining can also be seen as a subsistence farming practice. Where the farmer farms based on the strength of his house-hold in order to feed them and also himself. Also, artisanal mining should be encouraged by the government so that those who may not be able to go to school can still get themselves into mining in a much better and safe way since certain financial grants will be involved. Artisanal Mining as a name isn’t a curse but a small scale level of mining practice
    (ii) Valuable minerals – You would agree with me that the only kind of solid mining which Nigeria is known for is surface mining. We no longer have any underground mining which means that we still have so much of the minerals yet untouched. No wonder Chinese miners come over to Nigeria to still mine because they we have so much deep within the earth.
    On the issue of Ajaokuta kicking off, we know that Nigeria is blessed with so much solid mineral deposit scatter all over the Federation. Taking a look at Plateau state alone, we have over 10 Local Governments that have solid mineral deposits how much more other states. I believe we still have so much yet untapped and what call mining is actually scavenging Mining.
    4. The word sustainable is broad but i will narrow it to the picture of mining.Mining is done when there is accumulation of mineral deposit within a given environment. Right now, Nigeria has so much accumulation which i feel should be mined to better the economy of the nation. My paper is not in any way saying that Nigeria should commit the same mistake of facing mining alone just the way we left other sector for Oil rather, it is saying that we seize this opportunity to get the best from the mining sector since South Africa and other countries want to partner with us and also carry other sector along.
    5. When the artisanl miners mine in large quantity, they would definitely need a place to process their product i.e a milling industry. The paper is not only calling out for the Federal Government rather, it is opening it up to all bodies concerned to rush into the mining sector. When the Government takes her first step in encouraging the artisans such that they have incentives and other help from the government, their production rate will definitely increase and when this happens, even though the government fails at reviving the federal mills, other private ventures can step in and this will further make Nigeria Industrious and also, it will become competitive.
    6. One of the major issue we have in Nigeria is the fact that we put so much of our attention at the paper called certificate than the experience in the field. In as much as it is very important to be graduate from a Mining Engineering Institution, we should also know that certain programs could also cover for it. What matters more is getting to know the practical knowledge of the work and also, been exposed to mining programs that will be of help to better enhance ones knowledge. What i am driving at is the fact that Mining Engineering as a profession is more about getting the practical knowledge on the field than just the theoretical knowledge that is why field work exercise is of utmost importance in every Mining Institution and it carries the highest credit load.
    7. The are so many technical terms associated with mining. With such technical term, one knows that you are a trained miner. Some of those technical terms are Gangue which is seen as waste, overburden which means certain waste on a mineral which must be removed to get the mineral, Ore which means a mineral that is of great profit when mined, Shaft which means a vertical entry into an underground mine, Adit which means a horizontal opening at one end and closed at another end and so on. Thanks alot for this questions

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    1. I wish you understood my question it would have saved me lots of energy but I will recast it.

      1) from your explanation above I was able to understand how Nigeria became the 6th producer of Tin. How can you explain why Nigeria was also ranked 2nd world’s producer of the same Tin using the same data.

      In your work, the introduction: “…1905-1972 rating Nigeria as the 2nd producer of Tin in the world….”

      Then, in section 1.2 of the same work, ” …1905-1972 rating Nigeria as the 6th producer of Tin in the world…” Again?
      What you explained above was able to approve section 1.2 assertion but what about the one in the introduction of your work.

      I would love a more comprehensive explanation to that other than giving me a long history about mining. If it’s a mistakes I would understand better.

      2) in metallurgical and materials engineering, metallurgy (simply the study of metals and it’s properties) can be used to obtain metals from their ore, and not “…has do to with the ….”
      Also, the first definition of metallurgy in your work was exactly what wiki defined as metallurgy; you didn’t reference (no linkage) them. Why?

      3) I know that artisanal mining should be encouraged because it provides job and also valuable materials.

      My questions are:

      If artisanal mining is encouraged because it provides jobs for Nigerians, what will be you reaction/how will you feel, when someone calls you an artisan that mine minerals?

      Also,

      If it should be encouraged because it provides valuable materials for Nigeria and other countries. Can the output/the produce from artisanal Miners sustain the demand of a company such as the Ajaokuta steel complex?
      If the capacity would satisfy the demand of firms like ASC, DSC, etc., If it wouldn’t satisfy it/them. Then you can give me special reason why the government should encourage artisanal mining…

      4) first I think you should understand what global sustainability is, then narrow it to mining before attempting to answer.
      Your response what completely out of place.

      If you have done that, then respond to it. From your findings, provide answers as to why we should encourage mining considering its global sustainability.

      Thank you, am still watching!

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      1. Good day Mr Harrison for taking your time to ask again. I have long waited for your questions. So many questions were asked but one thing i think you should know is the fact that questions are asked for the purpose of clarity and that is why i am responding but never for the purpose of argument because as Engineers, we logically ask questions for the purpose of making certain things clear. Every Mining Engineering Student should know the definition of Metallurgy because that is what the field of Mining revolves around. Permit me to say this. If i was asked what a noun is and i define it as it should be, do you expect that on that premise i look for a reference for such. Asking a question in such vein to a Mining Engineer is indeed unprofessional because Metallurgy is more like a word that is used on a daily basis and as such, it was defined based on how often we use the word as a Miner and i don’t think i should start looking for what wiki has said but if that still bothers you, i will ensure i look out for what wiki say in my next write up.
        For the fact that i had to repeat the issue of the rating of Nigeria shows how very important the message is. It appears that you were not too comfortable with the repetition but all i am after is the fact that you get the message as passed there and also see reasons why Nigeria needs to revive her mining sector again instead of either relying on the oil and gas sector or increasing tax. I do believe that questions are asked for the purpose of getting to know the intricacies involved but not on the basis of whether you like the word or not.
        Do well to know that a paper or any write up is a reflection of what the topic of the write up is and not any thing outside that. The topic of my write up is all about encouraging the artisanal miners so i want to believe that all the message that will be passed will be on that purpose but if i may ask, Why should the artisans be encouraged? What we need right now or better still, what the government is agitating for is diversification of the economy and if there is any chance where such issue can be fully answered, i think he government should look into such angle with all full attention.
        Artisans are small scale miners because of the kind of production they make per day and also the crude tools they use for their mining practice but this paper is out to ensure that the government come into the picture to ensure that instead of just using their little practice pattern, they could do better when they are encouraged in any little way. You must know that South Africa and other African nation started through the small scale mining of Diamond but today, they have much stable economy than Nigeria because they had all the help they wanted and he government was also interested in making the environment better for them.
        Artisanal Mining cannot in any way be able to sustain the supply of materials to Ajaokuta Steel company but mind you, we have what we call small and large scale mining. If the government come around to encourage the small scale miner such that the small man can be able to have what to eat at his disposal, would you say that it is not worth it? There are lot of large scale mining but my paper is more on the small scale mining. Thanks

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  60. I commend your research efforts, but I have some questions.

    Rather than making efforts to encourage primitive mining processes, shouldn’t we focus on things that undoubtedly need to be addressed like focus on the education sector and on infrastructure?

    Did you know that the top tin exporters in the world actually export refined tin. Does Nigeria have the infrastructure to refine tin? If it can’t be refined how will it be sold?

    This current mining style used by artisans is labour intensive, dangerous, low paying work.

    Wouldn’t educating these people and developing our social facilities in order to give these people better options in life be better overall for the development of Nigeria?

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  61. Thank you Mr Wemimo for your very interesting questions. Please permit me to start by quoting one of the powerful leaders in person of Abraham Lincoln who said ” all i have and hope of becoming, i owe it to my mother”. I had to make this quote because all Nigeria has been today is due to the absence of Industries. Nigeria was better when certain industries were still functioning but every thing became different when certain policies made drove them away.
    1. Who are these Primitive Miners as used by you? They are Nigerians who are also parent to children and trust me, education is expensive and as such, most of their children don’t even go to school because their parent are artisanal miners with no financial strength to empower them educationally. As i have always said to all the questions asked in this line, my full paper does not in any way say that the government should only focus on this sector of mining rather, it only explains the need for the government to look at Mining as a sector that can bring in great change as long as Industrialization is concerned. When you mine successfully at very high margin, it attracts foreign investors both far and near and when they come, they would definitely want to build Industries to continue with their businesses and as the mining act stipulates, this Industries will definitely have to do certain community service like building of schools and hospitals. As the circle continues, infrastructural amenities are solved and the economy of Nigeria is back again. Take a good look at South Africa, most of the industries are not for the indigene rather those outsiders that came in but their economy is far better than ours that is why Nigerians had no choice than to go there in search of a better life. It all started way back in 1870 and it is through artisanal mining of Diamond in Kimberly.
    2. We don’t have active milling companies to start smelting and refining but when question 1 is handled by making the environment attractive for foreign investors, question 2 will definitely be settled and that is the fact that most of this foreign companies will even start to refine here in Nigeria just like the some of the automobile companies we have in Nigeria like Innocent Motors and others. It all takes time but we need to start from somewhere.
    3. Indeed, the current method of mining is very primitive and labor demanding and that is why the paper is calling for support from the government. Do you know that even with the local method they use, they get #32,000 a day from my research at the mine site i visited.(This is the minimum wage saga we debate of every day) They produce 4 bags of cassiterite per day from each hole and 1 bag of processed tin using 2006 price rate is #8,000,. Imagine how the margin will be if the government steps into it to help them in granting finance and also teaching them of better mechanized practice to you.
    4. There are so many ways to better develop Nigeria and what my paper has brought out is one very powerful tool because Mining is not just a business, it is an economy booster, Hope you know that other developed countries have left mining on earth to ,mining in the space. That is to tell you how very important mining is to a stable and developed economy. Thanks

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  62. Nice article….. Just pray the government of today can look toward this in order to revive the mining sector

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  63. Nice article… Just pray the government of today can look toward this in order to revive the mining sector.

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  64. Nice write. But to your understanding what do you think you can do if the government is not ready to take up their responsibility

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  65. I wish the government would be a 100% on this. Mining is indeed a tedious job that requires the latest technology. The use of these primitive tools has lead to deaths where workers are buried alive. I hope a positive response is given to the mining sector. 👍

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  66. Thanks a lot Mr Favor for your question. I am indeed very hopeful that the government will do something because just some few days ago in an interview, the minister of Mines and Steel sated that he is aware that some governors are involved in illegal mining. For such statement to be made, it simply means that he has his eyes wide open to make a change. Also, in one of his interview, he stated that the sum of 2.5 billion naira has been released for the purpose of helping the artisanal miners. This is indeed a big plus for the sector. Indeed, i do see a bright light at the end of the tunnel. Thanks

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  67. What a superlative idea,…. This would indeed help in a long run to revitalize Nigerian’s collapsing economic ketch, nice idea

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  68. Nice thought… if this line of thought is given adherence to, no doubt, there would be a complete positive turnaround in our economy… Thinkers still exist in Nigeria,kudos.

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  69. Well said and captured, this will go along way in helping the country i hope and pray the people in authority gets to read this great piece of work…well done sir!

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  70. Timely research. Even though there is great need for mechanization of the Mining industry in Nigeria. I still believe it is vital to make do with what we have and try to generate revenue from it. Kudos!

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  71. That’s very good Mr Clinton,you did a very good and sensitive paper. am really impressed. And i hope the government will look in to it.

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  72. Mr Clinton, this is indeed one bold step you have taken to uncover the truth as to the lose we are running neglecting the mining sector especially that part where locals operate. I pray this get to the appropriate quarters and receive the needed intervention. Well done.

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    1. Thanks allot Mr Abiodun. Well, I do know that change only happen when certain persons are willing to speak up. This paper is the voice the government need. Thanks again.

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  73. Impressive write up its high time govt fully explores the enormous potentials in the mining industry to bring about job creation and development in our country

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  74. A nice way to go Clinton. I do hope you publish your work and copy various agencies connected to it. Well done.

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  75. I trust the Government are accessing this vital information also…
    Great minds from this field graduate yearly to meet nothing to fall back on but rather scout for an alternative job not even close to their field of study… Attention need to shift to this aspect of the economy as well for proper balancing. Mineral resources are left untapped as well as the professionals due to our government’s negligence… It’s high time something is done.

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  76. Well said and inspiring, it we be more venerated when the government comes into play by encouraging and contributing to its development,so doing it adds values to our GDP/GNP.

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  77. Hi Clinton.

    1. Why preference of artisan mining to mechanical mining for a more advanced method?

    2. Is pump specification dependent on duty and head required? Should not this vary from location to location in line with geological facts of the location?

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    1. The kind of mining method that is used in Nigeria can be seen as scavenging kind of mining and this type of practice has indeed led to lot of loss of lives since this people have very little knowledge of the danger involved in exposing themselves to the different radioactive elements that may be in the mined materials. These artisanal miners fail to wear PPE which is Personal Protective Equipment and as such, they are fully exposed to radioactive elements also, because of the crude equipment which they use, they fall off the wall when they are trying to either go up or down the hole due to the locally used method they are used to. The paper is crying out to both the government and any other filed to come in and make Nigeria economy great again through investing into the mining sector to solve the issue of unemployment and also serve as one of the internally generated revenue w have instead of just focusing on increasing our taxes alone. Also, the pump and pipe specification that was mentioned in the paper is based on what is used at the visited study area for the purpose of de-watering that is, the removal of water from the pit which can be used for ground sluicing. Thanks

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  78. Hi Clinton, Nice Paper. Encouraging artisans in mining require both approvals of their mining activities officially as well as providing them with better tools and techniques to make the mining process more efficient and ecofriendly. What role should institutions like PRODA play in facilitating the mining process?

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  79. This is indeed one of great piece I have come across. Only if the Nigerian government will give it a listening ear, A partly solution to unemployment here we have…

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  80. Thanks alot Mr Abbas. I do believe that both the government and other NGOs will do something about this to save the nation’s economy.

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  81. Thanks a lot Mr I.E. PRODA which means Project Development Institute can do a whole lot for the sector. Mining as a practice can be seen as any other business but the difference is the fact that it is indeed money spinning because of the value placed on the mineral that is mined. PRODA can get involved by visiting this various mine site as listed in the paper for a very detailed survey. Also, they can visit the Ministry of Mine and Steel to register their intentions of coming in to help the sector and with legal backings from the ministry, they can embark on a better mining practice but this time around with the use of mechanized tools and also, environmentally friendly mining. This will be a big encouragement to any other sector that wishes to join PRODA. With such contributions, the issue of employment becomes a thing of the past because it will help make so many unemployed get something doing.

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  82. After reading through your work, i took in to go through to your responses to questions, I could say you left some stones unturned….but your efforts are commended.
    Room for more analysis lies in here

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  83. I do want to commend your effort for taking out time to go through the whole paper. This paper is a research work that is sibjected to further research but the most thing is the fact that it is structured to get the attention of the audience so much so that we know how richly blessed Nigeria is through mineral deposit. Thanks

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  84. It is indeed very amazing Mr Harrison that you ask me how i would feel when someone calls me an artisan. Your question clearly tells me that you have forgotten very recently that we have five cadres of Engineering Profession and for your reminder, they are:
    1. The Engineer
    2. The Consulting Engineer
    3. The Technologist
    4. The Technician
    5. The Artisan.
    Mr Harrison, here are the various cadre of Engineering and to your notice, they are seen as another form of Engineer though in the rank of a lower Engineer. It is not about how they feel rather, it is the fact that they are under the lower rank of Engineers and also, you must must know that this set of people know what they are doing even though they may not be that exposed to certain things like a well trained Engineer and that is the more reason why we are there to guide them into doing the right thing when they are face with certain technical issues that they cannot solve themselves.

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  85. To your other question Mr Harrison, permit me to say that the pointed out issue as regards the clash in the ranking was due to typographical error. Within the year as indicated, Nigeria was actually ranked the world exporter of Columbite and the 6th exporter of Tin. Thanks for that observation but for further insight into that story, you can do well to visit the referenced material.

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