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FG revokes 924 Dormant Mining Licences

The Nigerian government has revoked 924 dormant licenses across four sectors in the mining industry, including exploration, mining, small-scale mining, and quarrying. The decision, announced by Dele Alake, the minister of solid minerals development, was made after following due process and fair consideration, emphasizing the government’s commitment to implementing the standard policy of “use it or lose it” as enshrined in mining guidelines.

The affected licenses include 528 exploration licenses, 20 mining leases, 101 quarry licenses, and 273 small-scale mining licenses. The move aims to sanitize the licensing system by penalizing those who have “commercialized the opportunities offered by the sector into a bazaar”.

Investors across the globe are now free to apply for any of the affected cadastral units on the basis of first come, first served. The affected licensees have an opportunity to make restitution by paying fines for different categories of revoked licenses. The fines are N10m for mining licenses, N7.5m for small-scale mining licenses, and N5m for exploration licenses.

The payment must be made within 30 days to qualify for consideration. The minister warned against illicit activities such as license racketeering or obtaining licenses for speculation with the intention of selling them to the highest bidder, stating that the government will not tolerate such actions.

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