Taraba State Governor, Agbu Kefas, has issued Executive Order No. 3, which imposes a suspension on all mining activities within the state.
The governor stated that this action was necessary due to the significant risks posed to the ecosystem. Unregulated mining has led to the exploitation of vulnerable communities, an increase in crime rates, social unrest, and a negative impact on the state’s revenue generation.
Governor Kefas described illegal mining as a cancer that has deeply affected the state. The uncontrolled extraction of minerals has caused deforestation, soil erosion, water pollution, and has put agricultural activities and biodiversity at risk.
Law enforcement agencies have been empowered to take action against individuals who violate the order.
“It is with a heavy heart that I announce the immediate need to address the rampant mining and illegal activities that have been causing havoc to our environment, communities, and economy,” said the governor.
“As the Governor of Taraba State, it is my solemn duty to protect the well-being of our citizens and preserve the valuable resources bestowed upon us by nature.
“While our state is blessed with abundant mineral wealth, we cannot allow this blessing to come at the expense of our environment and the livelihoods of our people.”
The governor emphasized the damage caused by mining activities, including contamination of the state’s rivers, which affects public health and agricultural practices.
Illegal mining, in particular, has resulted in the exploitation of vulnerable communities, increased crime rates, and social unrest. The diverted revenue that should have been invested in public welfare and infrastructure has left the people in dire need.
To safeguard the state’s future generations, the governor has signed the executive order, suspending all illegal mining and mining activities in Taraba State.
Governor Kefas acknowledged the seriousness of the decision but emphasized its necessity in preserving the environment and promoting sustainable development.
Law enforcement agencies will be authorized to take strict action against anyone violating the order, while efforts will be made to explore alternative livelihood options for those affected.
The governor appealed to the Federal Government and development partners for support in restoring the damage caused by years of unregulated mining activities.
He also called for assistance in implementing a comprehensive reforestation program, providing alternative employment opportunities, and strengthening the state government’s capacity for effective regulation and monitoring.
Governor Kefas expressed his commitment to protecting the environment, preserving resources, and ensuring the well-being of the people of Taraba State.
The suspension of mining and illegal activities is a crucial step towards achieving these objectives and building a sustainable future for Taraba State.