Monday, April 15, 2024

Gbong Gwom Jos laments abject poverty in mining communities

On Tuesday, Gbong Gwom Jos, Da Jacob Buba, lamented pervasive poverty in communities hosting mining sites in Plateau.

• March 19, 2024
HRM, Gbong Gwom Jos, Da Jacob Gyang Buba

On Tuesday, Gbong Gwom Jos, Da Jacob Buba, lamented pervasive poverty in communities hosting mining sites in Plateau.

Mr Da Buba, the chairman of the Plateau Council of Traditional Rulers and Emirs, expressed the worries in Jos when he addressed the 59th annual international conference and exhibition of the Nigeria Mining and Geosciences Society (NMGS).

He expressed regret that the rich and powerful had taken over mining to the detriment of their host communities, which they had left in penury.

Mr Buba urged mining companies to factor in their host communities in their operations as the operations had rendered the host communities vulnerable to insecurity.

“Make sure that the localities also enjoy the good of the land,’’ he admonished.

Governor Caleb Mutfwang also said mining communities had been experiencing environmental degradation, and residents had been exposed to health risks.

“We want responsible mining development as we are worried about human health and environmental degradation. It is hard to distinguish between legal and illegal mining; a lot of criminalities goes on in the sector,’’ the governor said.

Mr Mutfwang decried the invasion of residential buildings under the guise of artisanal mining. He said he received a report recently indicating that at least 36 persons lost their lives at mining sites in Plateau.

Mr Mutfwang urged good governance in the mining sector to address its challenges, particularly through robust synergy between relevant government agencies and the private sector.

He said Plateau had signed two bills into law to regulate the mining sector and open it to the private sector.

The governor noted that besides being blessed with mineral resources, Plateau has a huge potential for generating hydroelectric power and the capacity to develop solar energy.

(NAN)

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