The Zamfara State government says contrary to what is being reported in the media the state does not own any goldfield.
Nuruddeen Isa, the state commissioner for solid minerals, who stated this while addressing journalists in his office on Wednesday, said the state government was never involved in the mining gold as purportedly reported.
He added that the state government only buys from miners to prevent the commodity from being sold outside the country in which the money can be used to finance the activities of bandits.
“The state government doesn’t own any portion of the goldfields throughout the state and is not involved in mining activities.
“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.”
While stressing that the state government has recently banned illegal mining activities in the state, the commissioner admonished “anybody who wants to venture into mining activities should obtain a permit from the federal government”.
He 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.
There were several controversies last month when it was reported that the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) had purchased gold worth N5 billion from the state government.
The federal government has since come under attack over the development with a renewed call for restructuring and resource control by governors of the oil rich South South of the country.
Ifeanyi Okowa, Delta State governor said the country “cannot apply laws in such a manner that it becomes discriminatory because you cannot mine solid minerals somewhere in Zamfara and you can’t allow Niger Delta to manage their oil.’’