Illegal sand miners destroying farms in Kano -farmers cry out
By Abdulmumin Murtala, Kano
AREWA AGENDA – Farmers in Dawakin Kudu and Kura local government areas of Kano have cried out as the activities of some illegal miners has brought their activities to a standstill thereby affecting thousands of farm lands.
The farmers who are mostly from Tassa, Gamadan, Ruku, Gundutse, Gainawa, Dantube, Yaburawa, Kwari, Yanciyawa and Tudun Bayero in both Dawakin Kudu and Kura Local Government areas explained that the illegal sand mining activities have not only destroyed them economically but has also affected them environmentally as wells in their houses have dried up, a situation that has also affected trees and other plants hastening erosion.
One of the victims, Abdulwahab Tsoho Adamu and Secretary to the Tasa Site Farmers Cooperative Union lamented over their plight saying that they have made all efforts to stop the illegal sand mining activities but all to no avail as more and more people are loosing their farms.
“From the beginning we used to see people coming with canoes and taking sand from the river. All of a sudden we saw a miners that came with a machines and were mining out sand but after some time they left because the sand had finished. So did several other sand miners” the secretary stated.
“All of a sudden we saw bigger mining outfits with dredging machines that came and set up the machines to dredge the river and squeeze sand out. Later our farms will just submerge.
“We complained to the state government, we have been to the office of the Secretary to the state government, Police, Local Government Chairmen, Public Complaint and Anti Corruption Commission (PCACC), Ministry of Environment and the Kano Agricultural and Rural Development Agency (KNARDA) but all to no avail.
“Thousands of people have lost their livelihood most of whom are youths and this is very dangerous.
Further more, the Public Relation Officer of the farmers’ group, Barrister Habibullah Ahmad Muhammad, who also doubles as their lawyer, said the sand miners are not legally registered as provided by the law to conduct the activities of sand mining.
“The most annoying thing about it is that all these miners are small scale operatives that are not legally registered to do what they are doing.
“They have not even undergone the necessary process of signing agreements with the farmers and a court affidavit that the farmers have agreed for the sand mining to take place in their farms. Because sand is not taken from the farm but from the shore and now they want to take it from their farms. They don’t have all these documents.
“More so, it is illegal to mine without Environmental Impact Assessment. And even when you have it and these environmental problems evolve it must be stopped. You can also cannot be allowed to mine without a plan to return the place to what it was prior to the mining. None of the sand miners has these documents.
“In addition, they don’t even have the CAC registration” the lawyer explained.
Meanwhile the farmers are crying out for help as they loose their livelihood while their youths are at the risk of becoming restive.
Arewa Agenda is a Publication of Young writers/journalist from Northern Nigeria towards Peaceful Coexistence and National Development through positive narratives