Formalization of Artisanal Mining Will Eradicate Child Labour in the Mining and Steel Sector – Dr Mu’azu

Ministry of Mines and Steel Development has thrown its weight towards the ongoing project of International Labour Organization aimed at eliminating child labour through one of its projects, Accelerating Action in Elimination of Child Labour in Africa (ACCEL AFRICA).

The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Mines and Steel Development, Dr. Abdulkadir  Mu’azu, speaking while receiving the Director, International Labour Organization (ILO) Country Office for Nigeria, Ghana, Liberia, Sierra-Leone and Liaison Office for ECOWAS Mr. Dennis Zulu during a courtesy visit to the ministry on Thursday 11th July, 2019,  said that the ongoing strategy of  formalizing  artisanal mining would help to eliminate child labour in the mining sector.

Dr Mu’azu said that 80% of mining activities are still at artisanal level which to a large extent, involve women and children. He stressed that the initiative taken by the ministry to formalize artisanal and make it economically viable would curb associated social menaces like child labour in the mining industry.

He urged ILO to extend its project, ACCEL AFRICA, to other states of the federation since according to him, there is no state in Nigeria where one form of mining or the other does not take place.

The Permanent Secretary commended the team for the project. He said the ministry will continue to support the project to achieve its goal.

Speaking earlier, ILO Country Director, represented by the National Project Coordinator ACCEL Africa Project ILO, Abuja Office, Agatha Kolawole, said the visit was to seek closer working relationship in addressing issue of child labour in the mining industry.

 She applauded the ministry’s contributions including renovation of a school and provision of social amenities in Gadoko Community in Muya Local Government Area, Niger State.

Kolawole said the Accelerating Action in Elimination of Child Labour in Africa project is presently being carried out in Gold mining activity in Niger State and Cocoa farming in Ondo State respectively.