Kogi Assembly Begins Probe of Alleged Chinese Illegal Mining

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The Kogi Assembly on Tuesday commenced probe into an alleged illegal mining activities of Chinese Nationals in the state.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports  that the probe is sequel to a petition received from a group of Concerned Citizens of Kogi, who decried the ongoing destruction of lives and property at mining sites in Ankpa local government area of the state.

The petition titled: “Please come to our rescue: The illegal activities of Chinese Coal Miners in Ankpa LGA; a Threat to Economy, Security and Progress of Ankpa and Kogi in general” was signed by Mustapha Yaqub and Rebecca Andrew, Group Leader and Woman Leader respectively.

The petition read by  the Deputy Speaker of the House, Enema Paul (APC-Dekina/Okura II) alleged that the Chinese were using organised criminal cartel to assist and aid their criminal exploits in the area.

“The Chinese have forced out other legal miners from business by means of threat and assassination of patriotic residents  resisting the organised crime.

“Sad to note, that Chinese miners, through some Nigerians, are recruiting vulnerable youths into cartels and giving them guns and other dangerous weapons smuggled into this community by the Chinese.

“These youth who are regarded as Chinese foot soldiers are being given  illegal and unlicensed firearms to protect the illegal bid of the Chinese and there’s wide spread rumors of assassination attempts being linked to the Chinese miners.

“For the first time in decades, we are experiencing very frequent high profile assassination -attempts in our community, The Chinese are said to be the core sponsors of this inhumanity.

“Their target is to intimidate other legal miners from business and eliminate people who try to resist their criminal exploits. The boldness they use in carrying out these nefarious activities is brutal and worrisome,

“Sir, though their crimes are many, as a matter of urgency they should be nipped in the bud in order to avert the looming communal crisis, youth unrest, riot and destruction of life/property, ” the petition read.

The group further alleged that every economic benefit goes to the Chinese through their divide and rule conspiracy that is highly volatile to the peace of the state and community.

It also alleged that the Chinese “indiscriminately wreak havoc on  our farmlands; drill trap holes while searching for coal and never care to reclaim the sites afterword, leaving behind trap holes in areas they carryout mining, while the helpless farm owners cannot challenge them due to fear of assassination.”

After hearing the petition, the speaker of the house, Alh Umar Yusuf, tasked the House Committee on Public Matters with the responsibility of investigating the issues raised and report back to the house.

Yusuf directed that all stakeholders involved should be invited to appear before the house  to find lasting solution to the matter.

Contacted, one of the Nigerians accused of aiding the Chinese, One Mohammed, denied the allegations raised in the petition as he expressed surprise.

“We are aware of the petition,  haven  been summoned by the lawmakers to appear before them tomorrow. We have explanation to give because what they said against us is not true,” he said.


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