From Maiharaji Altine Gusau
The Special Adviser to Governor Bello Matawalle on Media, Alhaji Zailani Baffa has kicked against the claim by a renowned lawyer, Mr Joseph Onu Silas that, the Central Bank of Nigeria is trading in gold with Zamfara state government.
In a statement, Baffa said “the attention of Zamfara State Government has been drawn to a shocking and disappointing reaction in the media where a known Lawyer displayed ignorance of law regarding the recent revelation made by His Excellency, Governor Bello Mohammed (Matawallen Maradun) over mining in the state”.
“The Lawyer, Mr Joseph Onu Silas has accused the Central Bank of Nigeria of violating its constitutional boundaries to trade in Gold with the Zamfara State Government”.
“He further accused the state Government as well of claiming to own the gold deposits in the state”.
Baffa stressed that, the Central Bank of Nigeria did not enter into any trade agreement with Zamfara state Government as claimed by the Lawyer.
“The fact is that, the CBN, just like in agriculture, is willing to invest in mining, as part of anchor-borrowers scheme where the apex bank will invest the said amount for the state Government to supply it with the gold as a proceed of the investment”.
“This is aimed at boosting the mining sector in the country which is within the provisions of the scheme”.
Baffa further explained that “the state Government is not directly mining the gold by itself. It will rather purchase the gold from the Federal Government registered mining companies in the state”.
He said, “All Nigerians are aware that the Federal Government is in the process of re-registering qualified companies allowed to mine mineral resources in the state on its behalf, just as it is obtained in the oil sector which Mr Silas mentioned”.
Baffa described the statement of Mr. Silas as disheartening, lamenting that, “educated Nigerians will react to issues of national importance in the media, dictated from the sentiments of their hearts rather than the facts digested from their brains”.