In collaboration with the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), the Federal Government of Nigeria (FGN) has unveiled, yesterday, a policy document on activities concerning gold mining in the country. This was done with the intention to attract more investors to the industry.
Represented by the Ministry of Environment, Mines and Steel Development and also the Ministry of Health, the FG partnered UNIDO to publish the National Action Plan for the Reduction and Eventual Elimination of Mercury Use in the Artisanal and Small-Scale Gold Mining Sector in Nigeria.
Also unveiled by the collabo was the National Policy on Solid Waste Management as well as National Policy on Plastic Waste Management at the event that held in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory.
Speaking at the event, Jean Bakole, the Regional Director and UNIDO Representative to ECOWAS, UNIDO Regional Hub Nigeria, said that, as part of the Minamata Convention, Nigeria has the duty under the policy document to accelerate investments in the mining sector.
He clarified that “This plan will provide Nigeria with current data and an up-to-date situation analysis of gold mining in Nigeria, the document will also appeal to both local and foreign investors.
“More importantly, it has mapped out a way forward for gold mining and its associated mercury management in Nigeria.
“The NAP has developed the national strategy on gold mining in Nigeria and its associated mercury use by facilitating formalization, access to finance, among others.”
Sharon Ikeazor, the Minister of State for Environment, reacting to the clarifications of the UNIDO representative, said that there exists multiple challenges which mitigate the desired growth of the mining and waste sectors.
Azuka Edokobi is a Writer and Entrepreneur