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South-south governors to hold crucial meeting on Monday over Zamfara gold



Governors of the South-south region which comprises six states, will reportedly meet in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, on Monday to discuss issues around the mining of gold in Zamfara state.

According to THISDAY, a source confirmed all arrangements for the meeting under the umbrella of the Forum of South-South Governors, had been concluded and that Governor Nyesom Wike is excited hosting the crucial meeting.

“The governors are looking towards taking a common decision on the Zamfara gold issue on Monday. This decision will be forwarded to President Buhari. South-south states also want ‘artisanal’ mining of oil,” said the source as quoted by THISDAY.

Delta state governor, Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa, had three days ago, said that no law in Nigeria permits Zamfara State Government to control and manage gold deposits in the state.

This is also as he noted that south-south governors will soon take up the matter with the Federal Government.

Okowa, maintained that what Zamfara was doing was clearly an illegality, warning that if the matter was not properly addressed, South -South governors would have no option than to assume control of oil and gas in their states.

The governor said; “South-South governors before now have been talking about the need for restructuring and need for resource control, obviously we are on that because we feel there is the need to restructure not only the country, but the management of resources.

“But as at today, there are acts in the National Assembly that guide the issue of oil production and with the solid minerals, those are not covered in these acts and obviously, this is already a sore point in our nation’s governance system and we hope to express this very strongly during the meeting taking place in Portharcourt on Friday.

“We cannot apply laws in our nation to the point that it becomes discriminatory because if people are allowed to process for their solid minerals, they should also be allowed to do same for their oil. So we are going to be very hard and try to make our voice as strong as possible during the meeting.

“I believe that at some point in time, these discriminatory tendencies will have to be revisited in our nation at some point in time.”

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