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Solid Minerals Minister Dele Alake Pledges Federal Support For Local Content In Mining Operations

Dele Alake has advised mining companies to emulate the international best practices of Segilola gold project to develop the sector.

The Minister of Solid Minerals Development, Dr. Dele Alake, has expressed the commitment of the federal government to support mining companies that place premium on local content in their operations.

Speaking during a site tour of the Segilola Resources Operating Limited (SROL), an indigenous gold mining company in Ilesha, Osun State, the minister lauded the extensive work that has gone into the facility, expressing delight that over 95 percent of its staff are Nigerians, urging other operators to take a cue from them.

He advised mining companies to emulate the international best practices of the Segilola gold project to develop the sector.

Commending the high Nigerian component of the project, Alake remarked that the firm has applied local content in its procurement and employment policies.

The minister praised the company’s tenacity of purpose and efficient methods deployed to push through with its vision, despite daunting challenges at  inception.

Stressing that his focus has been to redirect local and international attention to the mining sector, Alake revealed that the implementation of  his 7-point agenda is to reposition the mining sector.

“I have made sanitising the security of mining environment one of the critical points of my 7-point agenda. Recently, as part of the process of actualising that policy, I had to unveil the creation of a mines marshal. They have a base in all the states of the country.

Emphasising the imperative of harmonious relationship with host communities, Alake lauded SROL for overshooting its community development targets, urging mining companies across the country to follow suit to ensure safer, unfettered operating environment which will culminate in maximum beneficiation for both operators, the host communities and government.

In his remarks, the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Segilola Resources, Segun Lawson stated that the company is a world-class project powered by Nigerians, appealing for support from the federal government to enable it to scale up, and contribute better to the economy of the country.

Presenting the achievements of the company to the minister, officials said the company operates an open pit system involving drilling and blasting, hauling and loading the rocks before processing into gold.

Last year, it produced 84,609 ounces (2,398.6 kilogrammes) of gold amounting to 194.4 million dollars at current prices.

They said the company spent N29 billion on local procurement and has 1,993 workforce with 98 percent local employees.

According to them, Segilola has paid $ 4.3 million compensation till date and spent N1 billion on 25 community projects, which benefitted 11,112 indigenes, 135 fish and vegetable farmers, and 4,479 community members.

They told the minister that the firm has recycled 1.27 metric tonnes of waste and its safety measures have achieved zero environmental incidents.

The minister, in his response, pledged the support of the Federal Government for SROL, particularly because it promotes local content and positively impacts the host community with developmental projects.

Folalumi Alaran

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