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FG To Deploy Tech For Surveillance Of Mining Sites

Dr Dele Alake, the Minister of Solid Minerals Development, says the Federal Government will deploy technology for the surveillance of mining sites across the country.

Alake said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Sunday in Abuja.

He said that the technology would be in addition to the 2,220 personnel of the Mining Marshal Corps drawn from the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) to combat illegal mining.

The corps deployed across the 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) were also trained on modern warfare by the military to secure Nigeria’s natural resources.

“We are introducing some technology, we are not just relying on men and materials alone.

“The satellite surveillance gadgets we are putting in there is to enable us see in real time in all mining sites in Nigeria.

“So that when we notice any infraction, very quickly we can deploy the mining marshals to go there so we don’t even have to wait for any interpersonal communication.

“That reduces the time of knowledge and action. Right now we depend on people passing intelligence to us but when the satellite surveillance gadget is working, we will be able to see it ourselves.

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“Which is a step forward on the right direction”, he said.

The minister said that to attract investors to the sector, especially the big players, it was necessary to put in place policies and initiatives aimed at securing their investments. (NAN)

“We needed to put in place policy measures to ensure that when these investors come, they are not just coming into the darkness that we had here before.

“They will ask some questions, what is the security of their operating environment, their investment, personnel and the ease of doing business in Nigeria and the sector”, he said.

He said that the administration of President Bola Tinubu inherited a lot of security challenges such as banditry, kidnapping and terrorism, which were associated with the solid mineral sector.

He explained that most mining activities were in the forests, where such crimes were being perpetrated.

He said that the administration of Tinubu was determined to sanitise the sector, and reposition it to contribute significantly to Nigeria`s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

According to the minister, concerted efforts are being deployed to curb the menace with other government agencies, such as the Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC), the Nigerian Army and the Police for rapid result.

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“I had a meeting with Inspector General of Police on this issue and he is willing to give us more men to support those that we have on ground.

“Even the EFCC is cooperating with us, they are also arresting, the army also enumerated the number of illegal miners that they have arrested, it is a holistic effort cutting across all security agencies.

“But the mine marshals are just the face of the security apparatus that we are putting in place to combat illegal mining,” he said.

Source: Dailytrust

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