From Yakubu Mustapha Minna
The Director of Research Centre, Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida University Lapai, Prof Nuhu Obaje has called on Kogi State Government to establish its State Mineral Development Corporation as part of plans to diversify revenue sources of the state.
Speaking during the Kogi State Economic Summit, Obaje said the corporation shall constitute itself into a vehicle to acquire mining titles from the Mining Cadastre Office in Abuja.
He said the corporation shall engage itself or other partners or sub lease the acquired acreages to a third party for the purpose of mining the solid mineral in those acreages .
The researcher said that the corporation shall be self-sustaining after initial take off grant and shall have the power to be able to supervise both upstream and downstream mining activities in the state as well as take grant from the industrialization Fund for its activities.
Obaje stressed that the corporation shall set up Mineral Collection and Buying Centre to serve as one stop buying and selling centre for local and foreign manufacturers and provide protection to small and artisan miners involved in the industry.
He said the corporation shall organized artisanal and small scale miners into a cooperative societies for the purpose of training them on the best mining practices that will guarantee them value for their investment and ease revenue collection.
The director noted that Kogi State just like other states in the country must diversify its revenue base by becoming less dependent on oil revenue owing to it volatility, a reason for setting up the corporation.
He said Kogi State have comparative advantage in the diversification programme through harnessing it’s abundant mineral deposits, using the corporation as a springboard for improving the revenue potentials instead of dependence on monthly statutory grants.