85 Percent Of Miners In Nigeria Are Using Crude Equipment-DG RMRDC
The Director-General of the Raw Material Research Development Council, Professor Hussaini Ibrahim has revealed that 85 percent of mining activities in the country are achieved through artisanal and small-scale mining and the bulk of the mineral resources are produced with the use of crude equipment and in extremely dangerous and risky environments.
He stated this during a one-day training workshop on Capacity Building for Sustainability in Mining And Mineral Processing organized by Raw Material Research And Development Council (RMRDC) held at Mosmmera Hotel, Lafia with a theme “Building Capacity For Improved Practices in Mining And Beneficiating of Minerals in Nigeria”.
Professor Ibrahim said that apart from the harsh condition of work due to obsolete facilities, lack of skills and appropriate equipment constitutes one of the major constraints in the mineral sector.
The Director-General said the objective of the training workshop was to guarantee a steady supply of mineral raw materials for the industries and ensuring value addition not only for domestic use but also for export.
He said the training would also focus on providing basic knowledge on geology and mining, mineral processing and beneficiation, equipment/machinery sourcing, finance and market among others with a view to addressing the areas such as extractive technologies in mining on a small-scale, sustainability, environmental issues as well improved practice.
Professor Ibrahim averred that the Council will continue to strive to improve the economic, social, and cultural conditions of the rural communities through the development of mineral raw materials as well the provision of technical and other extension services.
An expert in the mining sector, Dr.Shekwonyadi Iyakwari, a senior lecturer and Head of Department of Geology, Federal University of Lafia buttressed that the state has a total of 32 varieties of solid minerals in the state, asking pertinent questions on why those minerals were left unexploited for years.
He described Zamfara state as one of the states with the best miners, adding that 100 percent of mining activities in the country are half done not due to the use of obsolete facilities.
Shekwonyadi explained that the modern way of mining was the introduction of reclamation, which he said was a shift from the former way of mining where people were allowed to go and died with the existence of ditch.
Shekwonyadi explained that there is no deposit of diamond anywhere in Nigeria, calling on the government to implement the new policy of reclamation of mining sites by miners.
Engr. Abdullahi Aliyu Alhassan from Niger state attributed the hiccups faced by artisan miners to the breach of protocol, adding that miners preferred getting mining license than hiring experts.
“That is why miners are mining without any results for years, saying mining is a capital intensive venture.