The Federal Ministry of Mines and Steel Development has said that the country generated N5.2bn from limestone licensing and processing fees.
A director in the ministry, Mr Ime Ekripo, said this while presenting a paper titled, ‘Giving Effect to Executive Order 005; the Case for Solid Minerals, during the Annual General Meeting of the Non-Metallic and Mineral Products Sectoral Group of the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria.
While unveiling the major achievements of the government in the solid minerals sector in the past few years, Ekripo who was the guest speaker at the event, added that the limestone resource base had also increased from 2.3 billion tonnes to 10.6 billion tonnes.
Speaking on EO005, he said that it was aimed at harnessing the domestic talents in science, engineering, technology and innovation in Nigeria as well as developing and applying indigenous capacity in science and engineering.
Ekripo said as a way of ensuring implementation of the EO005, the government emphasised the importance of competence and approved codes and standards for the indigenous professionals being encouraged by its directives.
He said, “The government prescribes collaboration between ministries’ departments and the professionals.
“It states that the punishment for any violation of its provisions shall be as stipulated in the Public Service Rules and other relevant laws, including those governing public procurement and professional practice in Nigeria.
“The government also establishes the Presidential Monitoring and Evaluation Council with the President as chairman and the Vice President as alternate chairman to monitor progress of the implementation of the executive order.”
In his opening remarks, the Chairman of the Non-metallic and Minerals Product Group, Mr John Aluya, said products from the mining sector held the key to the country’s development agenda especially in the provision of housing for Nigerians.
He said, “The current estimated 16 million housing gap in the nation is enough potential and creates enormous business opportunity for our members with various types of products which are key in this sector.
“It is therefore imperative that we continue to advance viable national development strategy to confront the housing gap which will be part of the positive outcome from this national concern.