Nigeria is reaping the rewards of embracing the world class Electronic Mining Cadastre (eMC+) system as 40% of the total number of Applications for Mineral Title received from November 2022 to April 2023 were transmitted via the electronic portal of the Mining Cadastre Office (MCO); the Director-General of the Agency, Engr. Obadiah Simon Nkom has said.
It could be recalled that the MCO began electronic mining cadastre system in November last year.
In principle, the rise in the number of mineral applications indicates increase in the influx of investors. This rise, which is adjudged as ‘significant,’ is a result of improvements made by government in the ease-of-doing-business policy, especially the ability of the MCO to make it easy for prospective investors to effortlessly relate with the Agency.
The Director-General, who made the disclosure on Wednesday at a One-day Retreat organised by the Management of the Agency, to consolidate on gains of the eMC+ explained that the theme of the Retreat: “Repositioning MCO Through Attitude Transformation for Improved Productivity,” aimed to consolidate on achievements while setting higher goals.
While pledging the continued commitment of his team to the realization of set goals, Nkom assured that the Agency will continue to monitor the new technology following the migration to online system in order to observe the patronage of the sector via the new technology.
“Our observations show that the number of online applicants is on the increase,” he said.
Discussing the essence of the retreat, Engr. Nkom, who rose through the ranks to become Director of Concessions and later Director-General of the mineral licensing Agency explained that the essence of the retreat is to train staff on how to effectively operate the new technology.
He stressed the importance of effective operation of the new technology, noting that it is a necessary as it will pave way for a most affective management and administration of mineral titles.
He said, “The essence of the retreat is to reposition the Mining Cadastre Office to meet up with current challenges. We have a new system that all of you are witnesses to, which is the eMC plus, we have to be able to adapt to it.”
“We have to be able to review our system; we have to do a rethink and be able to look forward to the coming years.
“We know where we are coming from. We know where we are, we have to be able to now know where we are going. In view of that, there is need for staff to share knowledge and learn from such a retreat,” he said, adding that a resourceful retreat improves personnel output and service delivery.
He said: “We had sessions with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), the Directorate of State Security (DSS), the Independent Corrupt Practices Commission (ICPC) and the Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB),” stating that it aims to ensure that staffs are fully capacitated on the mineral licensing tasks and processes before them.
Further discussing the objective of the retreat, the Director General said it will help to identify problems and proffer innovative solutions.
The Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commissions (EFCC), Abdulrasheed Bawa in his paper presentation titled “Ensuing corrupt free organization for excellent service delivery,” said corruption is a major factor affecting service delivery in Nigeria.
Bawa, who was represented by the EFCC Director of Internal Affairs, Mr Ahmad Abubaker, said corruption is as old as the society itself and cuts across nations, cultures, races and classes of people.
While admonishing staff of the MCO to work in line with global financial best practices, the EFCC Boss said corruption is a major challenge inhibiting development of nations, adding that there is no unified global accepted definition of corruption.
“The Transparency International defines corruption as a behavior on part of officials in the public sector, whether politicians or civil servants, in which they improperly and unlawfully enrich themselves, or those close to them, by the misuse of public power entrusted to them.”
While identifying corruption as “probably the most important factor affecting service delivery in Nigeria today,” Bawa noted that the Federal Government introduced several policies and laws to tackle the problem of corruption in the public sector such as the Economic and Financial Crimes Act 2004, the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act 2000 and the Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative Act as well as the Service Delivery Initiative.”
He therefore encouraged participants to effectively carryout their responsibilities as stakeholders in order to promote a corrupt-free environment and ensure that services are delivered timely, fairly, honestly and in a transparent manner.