Friday, 8 April 2016

NSCDC arrests 3 illegal sand excavators in Anambra

By Okechukwu Onuegbu


The Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) in Anambra State says it has arrested three suspected illegal sand excavators at a quarry in Nsugbe, Anambra East Local Government Area.
 Mr Godwin Omoreigie, the state commandant of NSCDC, who disclosed this in an interview with News48hrs.com, noted that the arrest followed series of complaints by officials of the Federal Ministry of Solid Development, Abuja and a licensed company, Konaza Oil and Gas ltd about the illegal mining.

According to him: “The activity of illegal miners was becoming rampant in the state. We receive complaints from the Federal Ministry of Solid Minerals Development that a staff was beaten up by some illegal miners along the riverside in Onitsha when he enquired into their activity.

“On March 9, we mobilised about 20 armed NSCDC officials to Nsugbe and Otuocha along Omambala/Anambra river in Anambra East local government area where we arrested three suspected illegal miners. The arrest is to deter other unlicensed miners from excavating sands,” he said, warning that the organisation had launched a special operation to arrest defaulters across the state”.

The Anambra State NSCDC boss, who refused to give out the names of the suspects, explained that investigations were still ongoing to arrest more culprits, even as he maintained that the offence of illegal mining and encroachment attracts N20 million fine or eight years jail term if found culpable by the courts.

He further stated that they achieved a feat with the seizure of badge loaded with 100 barrels of crude oil along the Onitsha riverine area in September, 2015, and therefore urged the Federal Government to provide the command with speed boats, patrol vans and training of officers to enable the agency carry out its duty effectively.

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