9 July 2021 By Georgina Humphrey
In a bid to develop the value chain of mineral resources in the country and achieve the Presidential mandate to prioritize and develop seven strategic minerals in the Mining Roadmap, the Ministry of Mines and Steel Development is set to launch its made in Nigeria Barite soon.
This was the submission made by the Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Olamilekan Adegbite when he received a delegation from the Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI), led by the Executive Secretary, Dr. Orji Ogbonnaya Orji in Abuja.
He explained that the Ministry had succeeded in achieving the development of barite from extraction, milling and bagging stages to support local industries and for exports, adding that the Nigeria bagged barite has “Proudly Nigeria’ as its logo.
Adegbite, while acknowledging the impressive contribution of NEITI in ensuring transparency and accountability in the sector, stated that the Ministry was working at updating and upgrading its ICT infrastructure to enable it link the ten agencies in the Ministry to ensure proper monitoring of royalties paid and funds received.
In his remarks, Minster of State, Dr. Uchechukwu Sampson Ogah, appreciated NEITI for the visit, noting that the collaboration between the two agencies is of great importance as it would ensure mining accruals are transparently monitored.
Speaking, the Permanent Secretary, Dr Oluwatoyin Akinlade, who was represented by Director Artisanal and Small Scale Mining, Mr. Patrick Ojeka, added that the days of NEITI auditing the Ministry without its knowledge were over as MMSD is ready and willing to share information of its activities and data with the organisation.
Earlier the Executive Secretary of the Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative, Dr. Orji Ogbonnaya Orji said the purpose of the visit was to deepen relations with the Ministry and share data that would enable the Organisation report accurately and transparently the activities in the sector.
He noted that sharing information and data with NEITI would attract investors and build confidence in the mining sector.
He therefore, requested that the Ministry’s website to be uploaded regularly to enable would be investors get the right information from the Ministry’s web page.