The Kwara State Government says the decision of the Ilorin Zonal Command of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, to fight illegal mining activities in the state deserves the support and commendation of all citizens.

To this end, it urged the agency not to be deterred by the antics of some corrupt individuals who are benefiting from the illegal operation, as corruption would always fight back. The Permanent Secretary, solid minerals, Ministry of Solid Minerals Development in the State, Mr. Okanlawon Musa Olarewaju stated this when he led the management staff of the ministry on a courtesy visit to Ilorin Zonal Commander of the EFCC, Michael Nzekwe.

Mr. Okanlawon said that the state government was behind EFCC in its efforts to rid the state of illegal miners who are operating at different locations across the 16 Local Government Areas of the State. “We are following your activities closely, especially the latest arrest of some Chinese Nationals over alleged illegal mining in the state. The Chinese have a company in Olayinka, Ifelodun Local Government Area of Kwara State. When I visited the place, I almost shed tears. The place is not developed, the roads there are not motorable and the company is not paying royalty to the Government”, the Permanent Secretary said.

According to him, no fewer than 230 (Two Hundred and Thirty) mining operators were in Kwara State and none of them had come forward to revalidate their license. He added that, “we have called them now to come to the ministry to bring their documents for regularization and revalidation”. Responding, the Zonal Commander, Nzekwe thanked the Ministry for throwing its support behind the EFCC’s fight against corruption, particularly its onslaught against illegal mining operators in the state. He said, “such support and collaboration from stakeholders is what EFCC need to stamp out corruption in Nigeria.”

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