The Nigerian Mining and Geosciences Society, NMGS, has bestowed the Fellowship of the Society on the Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Arc. Olamilekan Adegbite, while assuring him of continuous partnership in achieving development in the minerals sector. The Fellowship is the highest honour of the Society.
The Fellowship was conferred by the President of the Society, Engr Obadiah Simon Nkom who also is the Director-General of Mining Cadastral Office MCO) when the leadership of the Society paid a courtesy visit on the Minister in the Ministry’s Conference Room, recently, in Abuja.
The Minister thanked the leadership of the society for the kind gesture, and assured that the Ministry is working hard to address challenges facing the Society.
A statement signed by Ijomah E. Opia, Press Officer in the Ministry said the minister promised to collaborate with the NMGS to elevate the Council of Nigerian Mining and Geoscientists (COMEG) office and its laboratory in Kaduna to international standard for proper mineral certification and equipment repairs, adding that government will solicit World Bank assistance to bring COMEG to global recognition.
Adebgite stated that part of the efforts being made to reposition the Society is capacity building of staff that would be able to ensure that the Mineral Certification process is carried out for maximum beneficiation.
He assured that the laboratory is receiving urgent attention to help create employment, save money from travelling abroad just to certify minerals and seek for equipment repairs.
Earlier in his welcome address, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Dr. Abdulkadir Mua’zu assured of cooperation from the ministry to fast-track the growth of the Society and urged them to support the efforts of the ministry to restructure the minerals sector.
He expressed optimism that the society would be enhanced with the caliber of persons in the leadership of the society to the benefit of the industry.
Earlier, Engr Nkom, said the Mineral Sector holds the key to the diversification of the Nigerian economy, saying that the ministry, and indeed, Nigeria must make effort to reform it.
He stated that the purpose of the courtesy call was to intimate the minister and public of his membership of NMGS. According to the NMGS President, ‘over 90% of members of the society are professionals from the ministry,’ adding that professionals of the sector cannot practice without being certified by COMEG.
The President noted that going by the global trend, oil price is going down and being threatened by new emerging technologies, it invariably means that the mineral sector plays key roles as the future of Nigeria and the entire world.
Members of NMGS, Professor Okunlola and former Chairperson of the Society, Prof (Mrs) Deborah Ajackaiye who spoke at the event solicited assistance for a functional laboratory in Kaduna, and a continuous interaction with the Ministry to ensure growth of the industry.