Police to check unprofessional handling of explosives

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By Martha Agas

The police have promised to strengthen measures to check unprofessional handling of explosives across the country.

The police also notes that the measures will check incidents of explosions.

Inspector General of Police Kayode Egbetokun said this at a roundtable summit on Sustainable Development of Mining Industry in Nigeria on Monday in Abuja.

Egbetokun, represented by Deputy Inspector-General of Police Frank Mba, said that the measures would include ensuring that explosives would not get to the wrong hands.

He pledged the commitment of the police to strengthen its partnership with other agencies to secure the mining environment and purge out crime and criminality.

“We will deploy Interpol and Extrapol to tackle some of the crimes in the sector,” he promised.

According to him, the police have arrested 198 suspects of illegal miners from January to date with 111 of them being from Nasarawa State.

He said that the arrest in Nasarawa State was successful because of the cooperation of the government in providing an enabling environment for their operatives to discharge their duties.

In his key note address, Prof. Akinade Olatunji, the President of the Nigerian Mining and Geosciences Society, expressed confidence that the summit would change the trajectory of the sector for good.

Olatunji described the summit as apt to reap the potential of the sector in Nigeria, saying that countries that leveraged the potential of the sector would reap the benefits.

“Those countries that have paid no attention to the uniqueness of the sector are currently paying the price of their lack of coordination and foresight.

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In his remarks, Mr Dele Ayanleke, the National President of Miners Association of Nigeria, urged the participants of the summit to be pragmatic and radical in their critique of the challenges confronting the mining industry.

Ayanleke urged them to come up with strategic action plans for the sustainable development of the sector to reposition it for economic survival.

Earlier, in his remarks, the Director-General of NIPSS, Prof. Ayo Omotayo, said that the summit was aimed charting a way forward toward delivering a diversified economy and formulating policies to advance the mining sector.

The Managing Partner of Bruit Costaud, Mr Lai Mohammed, said that the report containing insights, expertise and experiences of participants at the end of the summit would be presented to the government for appropriate action.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) recalls that on Jan. 16, an explosion in Ibadan caused by storage of explosive miners, killed no fewer than five people, while 77 were injured and 58 buildings were destroyed.

The event was organised by the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies (NIPSS) Kuru in collaboration with Bruit Costaud.(NAN)(www.nannews.ng)

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Edited by Kayode Olaitan

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