EFCC arrests 41 suspects, impounds 12 trucks for illegal mining in Kwara, Oyo

The suspects arrested by EFCC operatives for illegal mining in various parts of Kwara and Oyo States

By Olubukola Aiyedogbon

Operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) have arrested 41 suspects and impounded 12 trucks transporting illegally mined minerals suspected to be marble stone, white powder, lithium, and lepidolite, among others in various parts of Kwara and Oyo States.

The suspects were arrested at different locations in Share, Banni, Lade, Patigi and Okolowo in Kwara, and Igbeti and Ogbomosho in Oyo State as part of the EFCC fight against corruption and syndicates of illegal mining operators across the country, EFCC Zonal Commander, Mr Michael Nzekwe, said on Tuesday in Ilorin.

Nzekwe noted that illegal mining activities are considered acts of economic sabotage capable of causing environmental devastation, socio-economic hardship, insecurity, banditry and a host of other vices.

According to him, the offence is punishable with life imprisonment under Section 1(8) (b) of the Miscellaneous Offences Act Cap M17, 1983.

He said that the arrest, which followed credible intelligence over the activities of the illegal miners featured suspects transporting truckloads of assorted minerals outside the state without due license.

”They were arrested at different locations in Share, Banni, Lade, Patigi and Okolowo in Kwara, and Igbeti and Ogbomosho in Oyo State.

“The suspects are Nura Lawan, Tunde Jimoh, Sani Umar, Oyeleke Sunkanmi, Adegboyega Oluwashola, Mohammed Umar, Muhammed Abubakar

”Others are Dawud Muideen, Chukwu Okpara Idam, Ganiyu Roqeeb, Umina Umina, Nura Ibrahim, Isiyaku Jibril and Samaila Ibrahim,” he said.

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According to him, they also include Idris Isah, Abdullahi Adamu, Yusuf Auwal, Aminu Usman, Muhammed Musa, Yusuf Ibrahim, Abdullahi Sani, Ishola Mayowa Qudus, Zakariyau Yusuf,

‘Among them are Abubakar Dauda, Mohammed A Mohammed, Soliu Mohammed, Sunday Adewale and Adeyemi Michael.

“The rest are Idris Mohammed, Auwal Adam, Yusuf Ibrahim, Abdullahi Lawal, Damilare Samuel, Idris Oyeniran, Peter Gaya, Sulaiman Kabiru.

”They also include Abdulwasiu Jimoh, Azeez Taofik, Isyaka Olalekan, Taofik Bello and Sadiq Murtala,” he said.

One of the impounded trucks with the illegally mined mineral

Nzekwe gave details of the registration number of the impounded 12 trucks as FG 179 6B; KWM 398 XA; TRE 419 YJ; ABC 795 XD; KWS 351 XC; ZUR 370 XJ; YL 667 XA; T3815 LA; AAA998XA; SHD 625XA and KWM 416 XA.

According to him, the suspects who did not have license to engage in mining will be arraigned in court upon the conclusion of the ongoing investigations,” he said.

“You may recall that the EFCC, Ilorin Zonal Command had in 2022 secured the conviction of a Chinese national, Gang Deng and the final forfeiture of two trucks with its mineral contents to the Federal Government,

”It also arrested 13 Chinese nationals comprising of a female and 12 males on July 12, 2023 for offences bordering on illegal mining,” he said. (NAN)

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