THE Kwara state command of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) has arrested five suspected illegal miners with over 70 bags of Gold ore at a mining site in Odonigi village in Moro Local Government area of the state.
Odonigi village is a mining site, situated over 70 kilometres from Ilorin emirate and characterized by difficult terrain.
Speaking with journalists after the arrest on Wednesday, the Head of the solid minerals department of the corps, Assistant commandant Omotayo Olubunmi who led the team said the five suspects arrested are Mohammed Yahya, Mohammed Joffa, Aremu Rasaq, Aliyu Ndagi while the fifth suspect who was described as their leader, Engineer Mumini Usman, was arrested in llorin.
The civil defence boss said that some of the items recovered from the mining site were over 70 bags of Gold ore, known as crude Gold, tantalites, 10 Motorcycles, rifles, charms and implements used for digging holes.
He also said that several of the suspected illegal miners took to their heels with their dogs inside the thick bush when they noticed the presence of officials and men of the Civil Defence Corps.
The civil defence boss also said that suspected illegal Miners created several big holes at various locations of the mining site where, he said the Gold ore and tantalite were excavated.
Olubunmi, who said the operation, was to protect natural resources in Kwara state from illegal miners, warned interested miners in the state to approach the office of the Federal Ministry of Mines and solid minerals in the state for licence before embarking on mining activities in any part of the state.
Also speaking, the Federal Mines Officer in charge of Kwara state, Engineer Hussein Toyin-Ahmed, said the mining activity at Odonigi was illegal.
He said there was no record before the Federal Mines office in Kwara state that permit legal mining activity at the site.
Toyin-Ahmed descried the act as defrauding the Federal Government of huge revenue from mining activities in the state.
The Federal Mines Officer advised interested Miners in the state to abide with the Minerals and mining act by obtaining genuine licence before embarking on mining business in any part of the state.