Mining company expresses shock, disappointment over minister’s action

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Minister of Solid Mineral Resources Dr. Kayode Fayemi

Following the shut down of Solid Unit Nigeria Ltd at Kampany Zurak in Wase Council of Plateau State on 14th August for allegedly engaging in illegal mining, the company has kicked, describing the action taken by the Minister of Mines and Solid Minerals, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, Governor Simon Lalong and the National Security Adviser (NSA) General Baba Gana Monguno (rtd) as very shocking and disappointing.

The trio went to the site of the company on the said date, shut it down, arrested the staff and moved them down straight to Abuja for further interrogation and action.

Reacting to the development at a press briefing on Tuesday evening at six o’clock, the Public Relations Officer (PRO) of the company, Suleiman Adamu expressed disappointment and shock at what was disseminated on the media that their company was engaged in illegal mining.

According to Adamu, “It is more shocking and disappointing that such unverified comments came from the Minister of Mines, the Governor of Plateau State and the National Security Adviser.”

He said that their company has been operating since 2009 whereas the then government never interfered with its operations, adding that the government ensured that all revenues accrued to the state and Wase local government were paid.

“That the company has been paying all revenues to the state, Wase Local Government and Kampany Zurak Development Association till date and we have evidence to show. We were duly issued with an exploration license in 2010 and the exploration was further renewed and it is still valid till date.

“Meanwhile, Alhaji Abdullahi Adamu Usman (the Managing Director of Solid Unit Nig. Ltd) has been mining in that place for over ten years before the establishment of the Nigerian Mining Cadastre Office.

“We have documents in our possession and which have also been presented to the minister showing that Solid Unit Nig. Ltd is engaged in Legal and Legitimate mining. These documents are duly issued to the company by Ministry of Mines and Mining Cadastre Office but to our chagrin the minister came on air without shame to say the company is engaged in illegal mining,” Adamu stated in his signed text that he read.

Further still, he said that the company applied for its mining lease since 2011, adding that it has paid all fees and fulfilled all conditions provided for by the Ministry of Mines. “But the issuance of the mining lease has not been done in contravention of the law which provides that the minister must issue the mining lease within Forty five (45) day,” quoting section 65 (1) of the Mineral and Mining Act, Laws 2007.

The scribe maintained that the company has been paying revenues and royalties to the federal government till date, adding that they have detailed evidence of such payments.

On the issue of community development, he itemized all that the company has done for the community, including grading of Bashar Kampany Zurak Road which is about 100 kilometers, medical facilities, ambulance, award of scholarships to students, renovation of classroom.

Reiterating the facts, Adamu stressed that no member of the community is complaining as the company has shown fairness to the community despite attacks and sabotage by some persons especially corrupt politicians with their personal interests.

He pointed out that the most annoying and disgusting aspect of the media report is the part that declared Usman (Dan China) the Managing Director, wanted.

He said, “We debunk the said declaration as frivolous, vexatious and a venom from a desperate and corrupt public officer who does not know the due process of law as he has no such authority to make the declaration without first inviting the Managing Director on the issue.”

They, therefore, demanded the immediate release of al the staff of the company whom he said were “unlawfully arrested on the 14th August, 2017 who are being detained for no just cause.”

Source: G Business

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