Governor Bello Encourages Calm in Ankpa Community Amid Mining Dispute

Governor Bello Encourages Calm in Ankpa Community Amid Mining Dispute
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Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State has appealed to the residents of Okobo-Enjema in the Ankpa Local Government Area to remain peaceful and composed as efforts are being made to address the ongoing dispute with Eta-Zuma Group (W/A) Limited, a mining company operating in the area.

In his pursuit of a harmonious resolution, Governor Bello emphasized his commitment to finding a lasting solution to conflicts between mining companies and local communities within Kogi State.

The call for calm was delivered during a meeting held at the governor’s office in Lokoja on Thursday, where he engaged with key stakeholders including Dr. Innocent O. Ezuma, CEO of Eta-Zuma, Hon Ibrahim Abagwu, Chairman of Ankpa Local Government, and other government officials.

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Governor Bello acknowledged the primary responsibility of the government in ensuring the safety and well-being of its citizens. He reiterated his administration’s dedication to creating a secure environment that benefits both residents and potential investors interested in the state. The governor underlined his commitment to safeguarding investments across all regions of the state while also upholding the rights and privileges of host communities.

He stressed the state’s goal of transforming into an attractive hub for investors, achieved by fostering a conducive business environment and adhering to agreements with relevant agencies and local communities. These efforts, along with fulfilling corporate social responsibilities, were identified as essential for preventing disputes.

Governor Bello commended the peaceful approach taken by the community to address the issue and issued a directive allowing Eta-Zuma Group (W/A) Limited to resume its operations at the site while the resolution process unfolds.

In recent times, a conflict emerged between the Okobo community and Eta-Zuma Group (W/A) Limited, a coal mining company, over allegations of illegal mining and encroachment. The community accused the company of interfering with legally recognized artisanal miners. In response, Governor Bello promptly instructed Eta-Zuma Group (W/A) Limited to temporarily halt its operations to maintain law and order.

The Chief Press Secretary to the governor, Onogwu Mohammed, communicated these developments through his official Facebook account on Friday.

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