The Zamfara State Commissioner in charge of the Ministry of Solid Minerals, Dr. Nuruddeen Isa, said the state government did not own any gold field.
Addressing journalists in his office on Wednesday, Isa said, the state government was not directly involved in mining activities as reported by the media.
He said, “The state government doesn’t own any portion of the goldfields throughout the state and is not involved in mining activities.”
The commissioner maintained that the state government only used to buy the gold from the illegal miners in order to prevent the commodity from being smuggled out of the country or sold out to bandits.
“What the state government does is to buy the gold so that it doesn’t fall into wrong hands who in return sell it outside the country and purchase weapons for the bandits.”
He stressed, however, that the state government has currently banned the mining activities in the state, adding that, “anybody who wants to venture into mining activities should obtain a permit from the federal government”.
The commissioner said mineral resources belonged to the federal government, as such, anybody who wants to partake in mining activities must obtain a license from the Federal government.
The process of Gold mining in Zamfara has become an issue of protest from the South South region which claim that if Zamfara could mine her gold, the South South should be able to explore her oil.
A group of people from the region had counseled that South South should take the Federal Government to the Supreme Court over the issue before Zamfara State now made this statement.