By KATO P. LADAN, Kaduna
Contrary to an assumption by a lawyer, Mr Joseph Onu Silas, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has not entered into any trade agreement with Zamfara State Government in respect of mining solid minerals in the state.
This was clarified in a statement signed by the Special Adviser Public Enlightenment, Media and Communications, to Zamfara State Governor, Zailani Bappa, dated October 10, 2020
“To further enlighten the Lawyer and those who think alike, the Central Bank of Nigeria did not enter into any trade agreement with Zamfara state Government as claimed by the Lawyer.
“The fact is that the CBN, just like in Agriculture, is willing to invest in mining as part of anchor-borrowers scheme where the apex Bank will invest the said amount for the state Government to supply it with the gold as a proceed of the investment.
“This is aimed at boosting the mining sector in the country which is within the provisions of the scheme,” it said.
According to the statement titled, “A CASE OF MISCONCEPTION OF FACTS OF LAW BY A LAWYER” Zamfara Government lamented that educated Nigerians would be pedalling such misinformation.
“The attention of Zamfara State Government has been drawn to a shocking and disappointing reaction in the media where a known Lawyer displayed ignorance of law regarding the recent revelation made by His Excellency, Governor Bello Mohammed (Matawallen Maradun) over mining in the state.
“The Lawyer, Mr Joseph Onu Silas, accused the Central Bank of Nigeria of violating its constitutional boundaries to “trade” in Gold with the Zamfara State Government,” it said.
“He further accused the state Government as well of claiming to “own” the gold deposit in the state.
“Correspondingly, the state Government is not directly mining the gold for itself. It will rather purchase the gold from the Federal Government registered mining companies in the state. Surely, all Nigerians are aware that the Federal Government is in the process of re-registering qualified companies allowed to mine mineral resources in the state on its behalf, just as it is obtained in the oil sector which Mr Silas mentioned,” it clarified.
It further said that it is therefore, disheartening that educated Nigerians will react to issues of national importance in the media, dictated from the sentiments of their hearts rather than the facts digested from their brains.
“Zamfara State Government, therefore, wishes to assure all Nigerians that it will abide by the laws of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and use same as a guide to the management of mineral deposits in the state,” it concluded.