The Minister of Solid Minerals Dr. Kayode Fayemi has highlighted that the Federal Government has made the harnessing and development of the vast abundant solid minerals found in Nasarawa state part of its focus for 2017 and was current working on data collection within the state.
The Minister made this known when His Excellency Umaru Tanko Almakura visited his office in Abuja with the Secretary to the State Government Barr. Mohammed Hassan Abdullahi and the Special Assistant on Special Duties Mohammed Sarki Nuhu , according to Gov. Almakura, the visit was meant to appreciate the Minister for his policies on solid mineral development which has an overriding effect on Nasarawa State.
The Governor stressed the Nasarawa State Governments readiness to key into the vision of the Federal Government on solid mineral development ,where he said the state would to seek the ministers approval for solid mineral prospection, saying the idea will no doubt enhance the economy of the state and allow it key into the federal governments diversification progammes using its natural resources.
Gov. Almakura made a case for the Minister to look into the issue of 13% derivation fund which Nasarawa State is not yet a beneficiary despite its appellation as the home of solid minerals, as well as requesting the Federal Government to support the state with a mineral based empowerment programme that would provide skills to harness the natural resources already available.
Responding, Minister of Solid Mineral Development, Dr. Kayode Fayemi explained that the ministry was developing a road map that will see to active participation of Nasarawa state in solid mineral prospection and production.
He noted that the ministry was ready to issue licenses that will see to growth in that sector and called on the state government to come forward with their SPV application as they wanted the state to be onboard , stating as they would be glad to issue the licenses that would assist in exploration , harnessing as well as production of the state’s minerals.
The Minister also revealed his ministry's determination to look into the issues confronting solid mineral development in state like Nasarawa towards realizing the benefits of its solid mineral deposit.
Dr. Fayemi said the ministry would look into the revenue implications of the of the derivation as the state was endowed and should enjoy the new solid minerals derivation fund now available to solid minerals and would work closely with the state to see it as a beneficiary.
Lastly, He said that some geologist from the Geological Agency were currently in the state updating the mineral map and exposing the endowment there. He made it known that he would personal come to the state later in the month to visit and see how the Federal Government could support the state.