The Miners Association Nigeria has condemned the Federal Government’s plan to ban mining activities in the country, saying it would render thousands of youths jobless and further worsen the insecurity.
The National Security Council on Thursday announced that it was considering the nationwide ban on motorcycles and mining activities to check crime.
The meeting presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari, at the State House in Abuja, said although the council was mindful of the pains the ban would cause, it was part of strategies to curb terrorist activities, checkmate loopholes and cut off their sources of funding.
But the mining operators wondered what was the relationship between mining activities and the recent jailbreak in Kuje Correctional Centre, Abuja.
They said though the association was expecting more details about the proposed ban by government, care must be taken not to worsen insecurity in Nigeria through the ban.
Addressing the issue of terrorists funding, the National Secretary, MAN, Dele Ayanleke, said: “The issue is that it cannot be a general problem. Before government will say that, one would expect that they must have done their due diligence and conduct in-depth investigations into what is actually happening.
“But the fact is that it is not in every part of Nigeria that this kind of situation is happening. We are aware that in the North-Central, around Zamfara and Katsina there has been issues.
“And even as we speak, for more than two years now, mining activities have been banned in Zamfara. But we don’t know the relationship between mining activities and the Kuje Correctional Centre break. We don’t know the relationship about those two issues.
He added, “We are quite aware that in Niger State recently there was this big massacre there that happened close to a mining site and might be related to mining activities. But one thing about that one is that we think it is more of a kidnap attempt that led to the massacre and not actually using mining revenue to sponsor insurgency and banditry.”