OrderPaperToday- Minister of Mines and Steel Development Kayode Fayemi has disclosed that the Federal Government is set to generate over N250 billion from the Solid Mineral sector in 2016.

Fayemi told the Senate Committee of Solid Minerals that the ministry had put in place certain measures to block revenue leakages and generate more money.

The Committee had questioned the sharp drop in the revenue of the sector between 2014 and 2015 and therefore queried how the ministry would generate money in view of FG focus on solid minerals.

In his response, Fayemi assured that ministry had devised strategies to go after illegal miners and those mining without the correct licenses to ensure revenue is not lost.

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He also said that the ministry was working at having a synergy between the states and the Federal Government so that illegal miners would no longer be allowed to operate.

“We have sat back, we have reviewed the activities of the sector, we have met with the critical stakeholders in the sector and we have understudied what obtains in other countries.

“We can certainly raise the revenue and ensure that the revenue that is been generated in the sector but not even identified with the sector is accounted for. We are putting a lot more focus on automating the activities of our mining cadastral office we would be able to also block the leakages.

“We have people for example who take exploration license and then use it as a mining lease: that is illegal, you cannot use an exploration license as a mining lease.

“We also have situations in which you have people operating even without license across the belt. But if we are able to achieve the kind of synergy between the Federal Government, State Government and private sector we would certainly increase the revenue profile,” he said.

Fayemi said that what had been lacking in the sector was the political will to implement policies stressing that President Muhammed Buhari had demonstrated the will.

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