Sada Advocates Review Of Mining Laws In Nigeria

minister_of_mines_and_steel_development_mohammed_musa_sada_10The Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Mr Mohammed Sada, has advocated a review of the Nigeria’s mining policy to attract more investments into the sector and increase its contributions to the Federation Account.

The Minister said vast revenue generating opportunities existed in the sector but lamented that a dearth of domestic and foreign investments had kept development in the sector on a gradual decline.

He said mining was a risky business making it necessary for the Federal Government to create an enabling environment that would encourage investors.

At a press conference organised by the ministry of Mines and Steel Development, Mr Sada gave an end of year report, listing the activities, challenges and projections of the sector.

Top on the list of issues raised by the Minister was the dearth of investments in the sector which has continued on a decline as a result of an unfavourable mining policy.

The Minister said mines and steel development was not a short term investment but a continuous one which must be consistently built upon, making it necessary for the medium and long term road-maps to be put together for the sector.

Mr Sada further said there could be no industrial revolution in Nigeria without a virile steel and mining sector and called for intensive efforts to boost the sector, with attention on funding, infrastructural development, human resources and curbing of illegal mining and insecurity.

FG Approves N48b For New Roads

The Federal Executive Council (FEC) on Wednesday approved over N47.8 billion for the construction and rehabilitation of 13 federal roads across the country.

Briefing state house correspondents on the approvals, the Minister of Works, Mr. Mike Onolemeimen said that the road networks were critical to the socio-economic development of the nation as they serve various agricultural communities and link major industries and tourist  locations in the country.

According to the minister, contracts for the rehabilitation of roads in Mbaise-Ngwa in Imo State, Abiriba-Arochukwu-Ohafia in Abia State, Makurdi-Gboko in Benue State and Sokoto-Makera road in Sokoto State were amongst those that were awarded.

Training 22,000 police officers

It was the turn of the Ministry of Police Affairs to defend its performance last year in line with the performance contract the ministers signed with President Goodluck Jonathan to deliver or be removed.

The Minister of Police Affairs, Navy Captain Caleb Olubolade, who said he could not divulge all the strategies being adopted for security reasons, stated that over 20,000 police men had benefited from training at home and abroad. The trainings, according to him, were geared towards reinforcing the government’s efforts in fighting terrorism in the country.

The Minister of Police noted that despite the challenges in 2012, the ministry was able to equip the police. He appealed to Nigerians to avail the security agents with information that will help them prevent crime.

Also making his presentation, the Minister of Mines and Solid Minerals Development, Mr. Mohammed Sada said that his ministry had developed a private sector-led reform that would bring the solid minerals sector at per with the oil sector.

Mr. Sada said among other achievements, the necessary data required to enable investors tap into the solid minerals sector was being assembled.

FEC also approved the production of a multi-user satellite map for survey and security, covering all major towns in the country, a task that was handed to the Works and the Science and Technology Ministries.

Jonathan gives Ministers two weeks to vet Ribadu’s report

In a bid to fulfill his pledge that recommendations made by the controversial Ribadu Report would be looked into, President Goodluck Jonathan has set up white paper committees to prepare Draft White Papers on the reports of the Petroleum Revenue Special Task Force and two other reports on the nation’s oil sector.

The others are reports presented by the National Refineries Special Task Force and the Governance and Controls Special Task Force.

A statement by the Special Adviser to the President on Media, Dr Reuben Abati on Thursday announced the appointment of the latest committee to probe the nation’s oil sector.

According to Dr Abati, “the committees are to study the reports, review the issues raised and prepare Draft White Papers for the consideration of the Federal Executive Council within two weeks.”

The white paper committee on the Petroleum Revenue Special Task Force report-now known as Ribadu report-will be chaired by the Minister of Labour, Chief Emeka Wogu, with the Minister of Interior, Comrade Abba Moro, Minister of State for FCT, Chief Jumoke Akinjide, and the Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Dr. Nurudeen Mohammed as members.

It will be recalled that President Jonathan, after the rancour between members of the committee during their submission of the report, gave the assurance that despite the rancour , his administration will look into the report and prosecute any one alleged of misappropriation in the nation’s oil sector.

The Chairman of the Petroleum Revenue Task Force, Mallam Nuhu Ribadu and a member of his team, Steve Oronsaye traded words at the presentation of the committee’s report to the President with the latter alleging that the report was flawed with unconfirmed figures.

The white paper committee on the report of the Governance and Controls Special Task Force will be chaired by the Minister of Lands, Housing and Urban Development, Ms. Ama  Pepple.

Other members of the committee are Minister of State for Defence, Erelu Olusola Obada, Minister of Transport, Senator Idris Umar, and Minister of State for Agriculture and Rural Development, Mallam Bukar Tijani.

The white paper committee on the report of the National Refineries Special Task Force has Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Architect Mohammed Sada as chairman, and Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr. Akinwumi Adesina, Minister of State for Health, Dr. Muhammad Pate and Minister of State for Education, Mr. Ezenwo Nyeson Wike as members.

According to the statement, the office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation will provide a secretariat for the committees.

The statement further adds that the President has made the move “in furtherance of his declared commitment to doing all within his powers to ensure greater accountability, probity and transparency in Nigeria’s oil and gas industry.”