- Commiserates with families of victims, Miners, affected community
- Reiterates commitment of govt to development of mining sector, calls for calm
The Director General of the Nigerian Geological Survey Agency, (NGSA), Mr Alex Nwegbu has condemned the unprovoked attack on miners in Janruwa community of Kaduna State Saturday 28th April 2018, which led to the death of 14 miners.
He described the incident as very unfortunate as it happened at a time when government is doing so much to ensure that miners in the country are provided with all necessary paraphernalia needed to get the best outcome on efforts.
A statement from the Agency, signed by the Director, Nigerian Geosciences Information Center, Mrs Bola Akinwande quoted the Director General as saying: “I recall that only recently, government strengthened security in the minefields by providing several vehicles to mines inspectorate officers across the states of the federation as well as strengthening the inter-ministerial Special Mines Surveillance Task Force (SMSTF). These efforts are aimed at bringing to the barest minimum mine related crimes.”
“Other programmes of government are the World Bank-funded Mineral Sector Support for Economic Diversification Project (MinDiver) which has as one of its key targets, the provision of facility support to mines operators in the country.
He further recalled that government has also provided the sum of five-billion-naira intervention fund for mining value chain support adding that the fund was a joint effort of the Ministry of Mines and Steel Development and the Bank of Industry.
According to Nwegbu, the commitment of government to the well-being of miners in the country cannot be questioned especially at this very crucial time when programmes to re-invigorate the mining sector is gaining traction.
He lamented the attack on miners saying that it is “disheartening to hear that while the current administration of President Muhammadu Buhari is making and executing serious policy decisions for the betterment of the sector, some retrogressive forces aim to kill miners.”
“It is even more unnerving to know that at any given time, the Nigerian Geological Survey Agency has several personnel on the field gathering geoscientific data that will be useful in guiding government and investors in the realization of Nigeria’s economic diversification agenda.
“We understand how it hurts, yet we want to call on all stakeholders not to be distracted by this very unfortunate incident, but to continue to work together toward the actualization of set goals for development of the mining sector.
The Director General commiserated with the Janruwa community, the Miners Association of Nigeria (MAN) and the families of those who lost their lives in the attack.
He appealed for calm while expressing grief saying that it is very painful to lose breadwinners in unprovoked attacks, and expressed confidence that security agents would do their best to bring the culprits to book.