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Bago: Struggle for control of areas rich in mineral resources fueling insecurity in Niger

Bago: Struggle for control of areas rich in mineral resources fueling insecurity in Niger
June 13
21:13 2023

Umar Bago, governor of Niger, says the struggle by some individuals to control locations rich in mineral resources is fuelling insecurity in the state.

Bago spoke on Tuesday after a meeting with President Bola Tinubu at the Presidential Villa in Abuja, on the security situation in Niger state.

He said the new administration is making efforts through collaborations to address insecurity and revitalize the agricultural sector.

“We are endowed as a state with a lot of mineral deposits and is not only related to the insecurity issues, most of the places where you see this banditry are places where you have lithium or gold. So, a lot of these activities are kind of associated with why the banditry is springing up,” Bago said.

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“However, yes, we will harness our mineral potential, we don’t intend to come to Abuja every month to collect FAAC or JAC or whatever you call it. As a state, we have to put all the things in order so that we can harness these potentials.

“Now, the state also has an SPV. The state mining corporation, where we’re hoping to have an MOU or synergy with other mining companies so that we can harness that potential and I assure you that in the next one year, we will come out tops.

“If you’ll agree with me Niger state has a lot of ungoverned spaces and we are agrarian and our strength is agriculture. So, we intend to cultivate most of your ungoverned land.

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“We have a lot of body of water across the state, we want to encourage our irrigation farming and that is why we are collaborating with Mr President, to ensure that the agric potential of Niger state is tapped very well.

“So, we will harness them. However, in the interim, we were working with security agencies in making sure that we curb this menace and by the grace of God we will come out tops.”

Speaking on women’s inclusion in his administration, the governor said an executive order has been issued to ensure more females are appointed secretaries of local government councils.

“First and foremost we have issued an executive order to change all the secretaries of the local government councils to be female, which we’re going to implement in the next local government council election. It is compulsory that at least all the vice chairmen of local government will come out as female, that is one,” he added.

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“Secondly, I have just made five appointments and I promise that the next one will be female. So you should be watching out for that. So we are not going to even stick to 35 percent, we will have 50-50 if needs arise.”

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