Oyo Shuts Illegal Mining Factory, Arrests Suspects

Oyo State Governor, Seyi Makinde, has announced the arrest of individuals involved in the illegal processing of mined minerals at a facility in Idi-Ayunre, Oluyole Local Government Area of the state.

He disclosed this in a post on his X handle on Saturday.

According to the governor, the operation came as part of ongoing efforts to prevent incidents like the Bodija explosion, which resulted in casualties and property damage in January 2024.

According to an Oyo State news media, Oyo Affairs, the governor ordered the arrest of four persons suspected to be operating at the site, noting that they operated against the approved licence secured from the government for business operations in the state.

In his post, Makinde wrote, “In our efforts to prevent a recurrence of the Bodija Incident, we were at Idi-Ayunre, following a tip off about a facility which was being used to process illegally mined minerals.

“I can report that those involved have been arrested and are in custody and we are working to prosecute them.

“Our government has also taken over the facility pending the investigations and prosecution.

“We were able to apprehend the culprits because the government and citizens worked together in a timely manner to bust their operations.”

The governor further highlighted the challenge of extraditing Malians indicted in the Bodija explosion.

He wrote, “Let me take this opportunity to report that we are still trying to extradite the Malians indicted in the Bodija Incident who are on the run.

“We are having difficulties because Mali pulled out of ECOWAS. We will continue to deploy diplomatic means to ensure they are brought to book.

“Please continue to support our efforts to rid our State of illegal activities.

“If you see something, say something and the authorities will do something. 615 is the toll-free number to call when you notice any security breaches.”

The Bodija incident, which took place on January 16, 2024, involved an explosion reported to be caused by illegally stored explosives in a residential area.

Residents of Adeyi Avenue in Bodija, where the incident occurred, were also reported to have blamed Malian illegal miners for the explosion that rocked the city that night.

Credit: X| seyiamakinde

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