It does seem yet again that the ‘African Curse’ have struck again in Nigeria. The discovery of raw materials is known to be a major cause of conflict on the continent. We’ve had the blood diamonds of Liberia and Sierra Leone, unending Congo conflict and now, banditry is becoming the new normal in Nigeria.
Gold is here and over the weekend there were reports of gold discovery in Ibadan, the Oyo State Capital. This is in addition to the the gold deposits in Ilesha and Zamfara as far as we are aware. There could be more.
The fact that Northerners were seen in a recent video published online mining gold in Ibadan begs for questions; can other ethnic group do same anywhere in the North? On whose authority? Were security personnel aware of this illegal mining? Who is bankrolling illegal miners? Are traditional chiefs and community leaders aware of are they conniving with the miners?
The ministry of mines and natural resources need to be proactive in ensuring that the country is not shortchanged by greedy elements. Except of course, if personnels within the ministry have become accomplices. Nothing shocks us again.
One thing that is evident is that no large scale mining could take place without a strong financier. If the Nigerian government is determined, it will definitely get to the root of the matter of illegal mining. Its not rocket science, is it?