Delta to partner FG on solid mineral development

Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta says the state government is willing to partner with the Federal Government to develop the solid mineral sector in the state.

Okowa stated this while fielding questions from newsmen shortly after receiving the minister of Mines and Steel Development, Uche Ogah, who paid him a courtesy visit in Asaba.

He expressed pleasure with the minister’s visit and stressed the need for strong collaboration between the federal and state governments as well as with the private sector, in developing the solid mineral industry.

Okowa noted that if the sector was developed, state and the federal governments would have less revenue challenges than they currently had due to their dependence on oil revenue alone.

He said the partnership had created a warm relationship between the federal government and the state, with regards to solid mineral development.

The governor said the minister had given me some briefs and the appropriate state ministries as well as his office would relate with the minister’s office on the issue.

“This is imperative because there is an attempt by the federal government to have a structured approach to mining development, rather than allowing it to be the way it was in the past years.

“He has already briefed me on what is going on in some states and I have also told him about some actions we are already taking.

“We are attempting to undertake a public-private-partnership in the development of kaolin in the state while looking into other areas.

“He has reassured me that whatever assistance is needed that they are willing to give and we are quite happy with that.

“I must say that we must continue to have a strong partnership between the federal government, state governments and the private sector.

“This is important because until we truly develop the sector, we will not be having the best of gains and revenue for our country, Nigeria,” Okowa stated.

Earlier, the minister said that he was in the state to brief the governor on his ministry’s commitment to the development of the solid mineral sector.

“I am here today to pay a courtesy call on the governor of the state and to acknowledge his wonderful works.

“Most importantly, this visit is to ensure collaboration between the federal ministry of mines and steel development and the Delta State government.

“This will ensure that we leverage on President Muhammadu Buhari’s directive to diversify the economy, using minerals and agriculture.

“I believe that we have had a very wonderful meeting and I must thank Okowa for his assurance of collaboration between the federal government and the state government,” Ogah said.