The Federal Government led by President Muhammadu Buhari has banned mining activities in Zamfara state, northern Nigeria, ordering foreigners within mining sites to vacate the area immediately.
The acting inspector-general of police, Mohammed Adamu, made this known while addressing state house correspondents after a security meeting at the presidential villa in Abuja on Sunday.
This online news platform understands that the government also launched a special operation to stop bandits in the state.
The IGP said the licences of individuals and companies that disobey the directive to stop the activities would be revoked with immediate effect.
His words: “Consequently, any mining operator who engages in mining activities in the affected locations henceforth will have his licence revoke,” he said.
“All foreigners operating in the mining fields should close and leave within 48 hours.”
Adamu assured those living in the affected areas that the security services were doing their best to address the situation.
Speaking on the sustained efforts to flush out, and permanently put an end to banditry and criminality in Zamfara, Adamu said the police in collaboration with the military and other security services had commenced “Operation PUFF- ADDER”, a full-scale security offensive against the bandits.
The IGP said: “The operation is aimed at reclaiming every public space under the control of the bandits, arrest and bring to book all perpetrators of violence in the area and their collaborators, achieve a total destruction of all criminal camps and hideouts, mop up all illicit weapons fueling the violence and attain a full restoration of law and order in the affected communities.
“Our commitment at protecting the sanctity of life and property is irrevocable, and we will not scale-down the pressure on the armed bandits until they are totally flushed-out,” he said.