Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Architect Olamilekan Adegbite, who announced this at the 9th induction ceremony of COMEG in Abuja, said changes needed to be made to sustain the standard of practice in the Nigerian Extractive Indsutry.
The minister called on all and sundry to close ranks with the council so that Nigeria can reap the benefits associated with the minerals sector.
He said his ministry would continue to support the council with policy and guidance and indeed all ways possible to ensure that COMEG functions properly and discharges its responsibility of regulating, controlling and enforcing the provisions of the laws and regulations guiding mineral exploration and exploitation.
The minister appealed to all stakeholders in both public and private sectors and the tertiary institutions to collaborate with COMEG for the good of the Nigeria extractive industry.
According to him: “The importance of professionalism in the extractive industry cannot be overemphasized, as such all hands must be on deck to ensure that COMEG succeed in its mandate as the foremost regulator of the professions in the sector.
“You are all aware of the importance President Muhammadu Buhari has placed on the mines and steel sector as one of the major focus of his administration with commensurate support in funding. In return, this sector is expected to provide jobs and prosperity for Nigerians,” he added.
Adegbite also directed that a substantive Registrar be appointed as soon as possible for the council.
He said, “when this is done, I will also ensure that COMEG gets a befitting office accommodation to carry out its operations. In other words, what I am saying in essence is that the council will be repositioned and rejuvenated for growth and effective service delivery.”
Earlier, the guest speaker from the Department of Geology and Mining from Nasarawa State University, Keffi, Nasarawa State, Shedrack Jatu, said for the past 19 years, COMEG has been unable to fully meet the needs of its professionals.
Jatu identified some challenges such as Inadequate funding, shortage of manpower, huge office rent due to pack of its own corporate headquarter office in Abuja