From Pwanagba Agabus, Jos
Sequel to the dwindling price of crude oil, an expert in the Mining Industry, Abdullahi Usman, popularly called “Dan China”, has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to ensure the inclusion of the Mining and Minerals sector in his developmental agenda, saying if properly harnessed, the sector will generate five times what the country is getting from crude oil.
Usman made the call in a chat with journalists in Jos, where he lamented Nigeria’s over-dependence on crude oil.
According to him, “Nigeria is blessed with many mineral deposits and if the sector is properly harnessed, it will generate foreign revenue for the country five times more than crude oil.”
He said if this is done it would create job opportunities for thousands of youths in the country.
Usman said: “As the price of crude oil continues to nosedive, I’m calling on the Federal Government to invest in the mining sector as it has the much needed diversification of the economy from oil and this can be achieved with deliberate commitment to utilising the mass deposit of solid minerals in virtually every state in the country.
“There are so many mineral deposits in the country that are not known and still lying untapped. For instance, Iron Ore and zircon Sand have large deposits in the country and if properly tapped, they have the capacity to generate revenue for the country more than crude oil.”
The mining expert also urged President Buhari to encourage indigenous miners to enable them develops the mining sector. He advised the government to stop the drive to bring foreign investors into the country to do what Nigerians could ordinary do on their own.
He assured that “we have veteran miners that can guide us to do all that we need to do. If we depend largely on foreign investors in mining, we are not going to progress, but if government empowers local miners and give them necessary incentives, I think the sky will be our limit and a lot can be achieved in the mining sector. Only Mining can give all the services and the employment we need in