Emulate Dangote’s Investment Drive, Says Former Ethiopian Prime Minister

Former Ethiopia Prime Minister, Hailemariam Desalegn has described as exceptional and enormous the investment of the Dangote Group in Africa's oil refining sector and urged other private sector investors to take a cue from the group’s investment drive.

Speaking during the tour of Dangote Jetty, Fertiliser and Refinery Plant, Desalegn said the President of Dangote Group, Aliko Dangote has enormous influence in the sector and that his involvement in the general economic wellbeing of the whole of Africa is unquantifiable.

He therefore encouraged other investors to consider the strategic nature of investments made by the conglomerate and emulate them in order to enhance the value of the continent’s economy: "I think this is a lesson for other African investors to take risk and bring about big change. A mega project of this magnitude, actually needs dedication and commitment, as well as sacrifice."

He insisted that Africa needs massive investment like the Dangote Refinery for economic development.

According to him, investors in the continent must recognize that investment in essential sector would remain critical to sustainable economic growth. “I think this project is not only for Nigeria, but for the entire African countries”, he added.

Group Executive Director, Strategy, Portfolio Development & Capital Projects, Dangote Industries Limited, Devakumar Edwin, said the project would provide 135,000 retail outlets, 26,716 filling stations and 129 depots in Nigeria, while the 2,600 trucks for transport will create additional jobs.

Another invaluable area of interest the project will enhance is in the area of skill development and capacity building for Nigerian. Already, Mr. Edwin said training of second batch of Nigerian Engineers has started in Delhi India.

He said, “we are sending all engineers abroad in batches. They will engage in classroom training for one month and on the job training of one year. They will be working with real time experts in the industry every day.”

 Edwin disclosed that the company’s target is for a significant portion of Nigeria’s crude oil production to be refined domestically, rather than imported, thereby creating jobs within Nigeria, and bringing a halt to the current importation of refined petroleum product.

Edwin said the refinery is going to provide over 100,000 indirect employment through retail outlets. He said the refinery is designed to meet Euro V grade, which is the highest standard in the world, hence products can be exported to any part of the world.

“It will be well diversified and able to process Nigerian crude, African crude and crude from other parts of the world. In terms of evacuation routes, two crude oil single point mooring (SPM) buoys and three multi-product SPMs will be located within the Atlantic Ocean to transfer crude oil to a calling tanker.

Edwin said the company was also constructing the largest fertiliser plant in West Africa with the capacity to produce three million tonnes of urea per year.

Dangote Fertilizer Complex, consisting of Ammonia and Urea plants, is conceived to be one of the world's largest fertilizer plants with a total capacity of 3 Million Tonnes per Annum of Urea fertilizer. Therefore, the Dangote Fertilizer is positioned to bridge the gap between local demand and national capacity. Dangote Fertilizer Plants will produce Urea that will assist farmers boost their crop yields through easy access to fertilizer,” he added.

Liberia, Niron Metals Sign MoU To Export Zogota Iron Ore

The Government of  Liberia and Niron Metals Plc jointly announced the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), regarding the passage through Liberia of iron ore from the Zogota iron ore deposit in the Republic of Guinea . The MOU relates to the use of existing rail and port infrastructure in Liberia.

The signing of the MOU follows the joint vision of economic cooperation, expressed by the leaders of the republics of Guinea and Liberia, H.E. President Alpha Condé and H.E. President George Weah, at a meeting held in Dakar on the 2 April 2019.

The Government of Guinea has already given authorisation for Niron to export material from Zogota in compliance with the Mining Code of the Republic of Guinea 2013.

The Chairman of the Liberian National Investment Commission, Mr Molewuleh Gray said: “This agreement opens a new chapter and supports the development of a world-class mining and logistics project for the benefit of the people of the Mano River Union.  

“The Government will now initiate discussions with the railway and port concessionaire, relating to third-party access rights. Thereafter we anticipate accelerated tripartite discussions to commence”.

Sir Mick Davis, Chairman of Niron said: “This MOU is an important milestone in our plans to develop the Zogota project. We intend to complete our feasibility study within six months and continue to work with relevant stakeholders to bring Zogota rapidly into production for the benefit of all.”

The MOU signatories from the Republic of Liberia were Hon. Samuel A. Wlue Minister from the Ministry of Transport, Hon. Gesler E. Murray, Minister from the Ministry of Mines & Energy, Hon. Molewuleh B. Gray, Chairman of the National Investment Commission, Hon. Samuel D. Tweah, Minister from the Ministry of Finance & Development Planning with their signatures attested by Cllr. Frank Musa Dean Jr. the Minister of Justice/Attorney General of the Republic of Liberia.

Vantage Capital Exits Thebe Timrite

Vantage Capital, Africa's largest mezzanine debt fund manager, announced today that it has fully exited its investment in Thebe Timrite ("Timrite"), a leading black-controlled supplier of mining support products and services in South Africa.

 Vantage provided an R89m ($6,3m) mezzanine debt facility to fund the 100% acquisition of Timrite by Thebe Investment Corporation ("Thebe") and the Timrite management team in 2013, as well as to fund expansion capital expenditure. Thebe is one of South Africa's leading black-owned investment companies, managing assets of over R6 billion ($420m).

Mokgome Mogoba, Associate Partner at Vantage Capital, said, "the investment we made in Thebe Timrite demonstrates the support we provide to black-controlled businesses and our commitment to transformation in South Africa.

Furthermore, it highlights the faith that we have in the resilience of the South African mining sector and the employment opportunities it creates. This was the second time we had partnered with Thebe as we had previously supported Thebe's investment in Safripol, another successful investment."   

Luc Albinski, Managing Partner at Vantage Capital, added, "Vantage was an active participant in many board discussions over the past six years at Timrite, helping to shape the growth strategies of the company during a difficult time in South Africa's mining sector.

It was a privilege to engage with Timrite management and Thebe as the company diversified its product range through world-class R&D, introducing new products into the market that have made our mines safer."

Nonhlanhla Mabusela, CEO of Thebe Timrite, said, "we are grateful to have partnered with Vantage Capital during both strong and turbulent times within the mining sector in recent years. Vantage's funding did indeed play a key role in facilitating black ownership in the underground roof support market, placing Timrite miles ahead of its peers in its transformation targets."

Sizwe Mncwango, CEO of Thebe said "We would like to express our deepest gratitude to Vantage Capital for the partnership and support afforded to Thebe in steering the company over the last 6 years. The exit by Vantage Capital allows Thebe to become a sole shareholder of Thebe Timrite and we are excited about the future of this business."

To date, Vantage Capital has successfully exited nine investments generating proceeds of R2.6bn ($190m) across its three generations of mezzanine debt funds and achieved an aggregate money multiple of 2.0x.

Dangote, Imouhkuede Launch Africa Business Coalition For Health

An ambitious platform designed to bring together business leaders in Africa to collaborate with heads of government and other stakeholders to tackle basic health challenges in Africa has been launched in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia with assurances from government to collaborate for a healthier Africans.

The platform, African Business Coalition for Health (ABC Health) was launched with commitments by all partners and stakeholders to put efforts together to improve basic health care services in the continent during the inaugural Africa Business: Health Forum 2019, which witnessed the launch of the official logo of the ABC Health.

The ABC Health is a joint initiative of Aliko Dangote Foundation; GBCHealth, and United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA), with the objective of driving business leadership, strengthening partnerships, and facilitating investments to change the face of healthcare in Africa.

Taking place on the margins of the 32nd African Union Summit Heads of Governments and Business Community leaders across Africa, the forum  examined opportunities to accelerate economic development and growth of the continent through a healthcare reform agenda that focuses on the wellbeing of employees for a more active and productive workforce.

The forum is expected to unify Africa's key decision makers in exploring opportunities for catalysing growth in the continent's economy, through business partnerships to invest in the health sector.

In his opening remarks, the Chairman of Aliko Dangote Foundation, Alhaji Aliko Dangote, who was represented by the Foundation's Executive Director, Halima Aliko-Dangote said Africa Business Health Forum would identify issues and solutions to Africa's health challenges with a view to mobilizing the will to confront it headlong.

He said it is a well-known fact that there is a vital relationship between health and economic growth and development in Africa as healthy populations live longer, are more productive, and save more. Access to essential health services is an important aspect of development.

Dangote stated that "Governments from both developed and developing countries are increasingly looking at public-private partnerships (PPPs) as a way to expand access to higher-quality health services by leveraging capital, managerial capacity, and know-how from the private sector."

According to him, "Africa's healthcare systems demand significant investments to meet the needs of their growing populations, changing patterns of diseases and the internationally-agreed development goals.

He said as a businessman, and through Aliko Dangote foundation, he is committed to working with governments and key stakeholders for the development of impactful health initiatives in Africa in the belief that private sector leaders have a strong role to play.

Back in his home country, Dangote informed his audience that in keeping with his passion to see a healthier African people and better continent he has proposed and charged business leaders to commit at least one percent of their profit after tax to support the health sector.

In his own remark, the Co-Chair of the GBCHealth, Aigboje Aig-Imoukhuede, said while Africa has made significant progress in the funding of healthcare, "we are still very far from where we need to be to achieve SDG Goal 3,"

He lamented that the healthcare in Africa is constrained by scarce public funding and limited donor support, and that the out of pocket expenditure accounts for 36% of Africa's total healthcare spend pointing out that given the income levels in Africa, it is no surprise that healthcare spend in Africa is grossly inadequate to meet Africa's needs leading to a financing gap of N66bn per annum.

Mr Imhokuede said it was clear that African government alone cannot solve this challenge, which is further exacerbated by our growing population and Africa's changing disease portfolio. Therefore there is no alternative but to turn to the private sector to complement government funding.

Said he "Our continent accounts for less than 2% of global health even though our very fertile people account for 16% of global population and carry 26% of the global disease burden. By 2050 Africans will account for more than 50% of global population growth much of that coming from my country Nigeria, a great opportunity and at the same time a ticking time bomb should we fail our health systems quickly.

"That is why we have gathered here in Addis Ababa today to see how together we can fix health in Africa. The private sector and the public sector working together as partners have the potential to change Africa's healthcare from doom and gloom to progress and results. Africa's private sector has great capacity to be relevant partners.

"The private sector must be encouraged to optimize and step up its involvement and contribution to health funding in Africa. We have seen what global private sector players accomplished in the fight against the AIDS epidemic through powerful coalitions such as GBCHealth. This is an indication of the power of consolidated effort which Africa's growing private sector can bring to solving our health challenges."    

"African leaders now have a stronger sense of urgency to combat the lack of quality health care that Africans endure. The inequality of healthcare available to Africans compared to people in other parts of the globe is vast and unacceptably pervasive. With the cooperation of both the public and private sectors, there is a huge potential to boost health outcomes with significant financial gains," said Aigboje Aig-Imoukhuede, Co-Chair GBCHealth.

The Executive Secretary of the United Nation Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA), Vera Songwe regretted that that Africa with over 50 countries is struggling to combat her healthcare challenges but that organizations such as being launch offer a veritable perspective from the private sector to the solutions to Africa's health care problems.

She said about $17.3 worth of drugs are imported into African Continent and that if Africa can manufacture those drugs, then that would be 17.3 billion worth of jobs created.

However, to attract the participation of African private sector, there is the need to create enabling environment. "To the private sector, our leaders are expecting you to invest in healthcare because you will get higher returns than you can get anywhere else."

According to her, a healthier Africa would be a happy Africa and a happy Africa will be a productive Africa.

One after another, the three African heads of governments, namely President of Republic of Djibouti, Omar Gilles; the Ethiopian Prime Minister, Abiy Ahmed; and Botswana President Mokgweetsi Masisi took turn to explain what their administrations have been doing to improve health care delivery services in their respective countries.

They also gave lack of adequate funding as part of the problems militating aainst achieving their administrations' plan to provide sound health care services just as other African countries.

They all endorsed the establishment of Africa Business Coalition for Health and concluded that it would provide opportunities to accelerate economic development and growth of the continent through a healthcare reform agenda that focuses on the wellbeing of employees for a more active and productive workforce.

Dangote Now Most Valuable Brand In Nigeria

Nigeria's Dangote has emerged the most valuable brand among the top 50 brands in Nigeria for 2018 which were unveiled at the weekend in Lagos.

This is coming barely three months after the brand was adjudged the most admired brand of African origin by Consumers in a brand rating coordinated by South Africa based Brand Leadership in conjunction with Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE). 

Brand Nigeria, the agency that coordinated the survey in Nigeria, in its report lauded the efforts of the handlers of the Dangote Brand because this is the first time a Nigerian brand would be achieving the feat since 2013. 

Unveiling the list of the top 50 brands at an event attended by top executives of leading corporate organizations in the country as well as stakeholders in Marketing and Advertising Industry, Mr. Taiwo Oluboyede, the Head of Brand Nigeria explained that 46 percent of the top brands amounting to 23 are Nigerian brands. 

Giving the highlights of the brands rating, he stated that Promasidor Nigeria Limited emerged the highest gainer jumping 15 points from last year, the followed by the trio of BUA, Nine Mobile and Olam all of which moved 12 points from last year position, while seven brands, Conoil, Channels TV, Union Bank, Access Bank, Chi, Toyota, and GTBank maintained their positions. 

He stated further that Fidelity bank came as a first entrant this year and Stallion Group making a fresh return to the top 50 brands this having exited before. 

The top 50 brands in Nigeria, Soboyede maintained are the brands that have succeeded in delivering their promises to the consumers. "They are fast growing in value and they are the drivers of our economy,"

"The top brands this year are those that have been able to analyse needs, see opportunities by creating solutions to them and communicating same to the consumers.

"They have also become so good at it that the consumers often refer to them with the name of the need they meet that is their products or services. These brands have found how to deliver something special often times." 

Giving insights into how the evaluation of the top 50 brands was carried out, Soboyede said: "we used the Brand Strength Model (BSM index),"

"It is model that measures a brand's ability to deliver on its promise to the consumers from the consumer's point of view. The model uses basic qualitative elements and there are seven variables that goes into the BSM model". 

According to the variables starts with a test of people's knowledge and affinity with the brands operational in Nigeria. We had a top on the mind survey where people tell us brads that easily come to their mind or brand they can recall. 

"Other variables in the model are innovation-this is a test how innovative a brand service delivery is; Quality-this checks some factors that enhance consumer's confidence in product delivery; Category Leadership-this is a classification of brands within their industry; Online engagements-this checks how active the brand's online platforms are and how engaging it has been from last evaluation; National Spread-this checks operational presence of a brand across the country."         

Chief Corporate Communication Officer of the Dangote Group, Anthony Chiejina said the management was not surprised at the ranking because the company has continuously deepened and delivered on its core values is to be a world-class enterprise that is passionate about the quality of life of the people and giving high returns to stakeholders. 

"And this philosophy is driven by values, which include customer service, entrepreneurship, excellence and leadership. In any of our subsidiaries, the focus is to provide local, value-added products and services that meet the 'basic needs' of the populace.

"Through the construction and operation of large scale manufacturing facilities in Nigeria and across Africa, the Group is focused on building local manufacturing capacity to generate employment, prevent capital flight and provide locally produced goods for the people.

"The expansion of our business especially the Cement which has operations in 14 African countries including Nigeria, Benin, Ghana, Senegal, South Africa and Zambia, among others has added to popularity of our company and the products, Mr. Chiejina stated.

It would be recalled that back in July, the Dangote brand came atop in the ranking of 100 best brands in Africa themed "Brand Africa:100", the sixth edition announced in Johannesburg, South Africa. 

The Brand leadership in the ranking list said of Dangote brand "Nigerian industrial brand Dangote is the number one African brand recalled when consumers are prompted about the continent (Africa) of origin while the South African tele-communications brand MTN is the number one African brand spontaneously recalled irrespective of continent of origin. 

The United States sports and fitness brand, Nike, is the overall brand in Africa spontaneously recalled by consumers. 

The Brand Africa 100 ranking is based on a survey among consumers 18 years and older, conducted in 23 countries across Africa. The countries, representing all African economic regions, collectively account for 75% of the population and the 74% of the GDP of Africa. 

African brands rose slightly to account for 17% of the Top 100 brands in Africa, non-African brands retained their firm position in Africa with 83% share of the Top 100 most admired brands in Africa. Brands from Europe leads the table with 40%, North America at 24% and Asia 19%.  West Africa 6% with only Nigerian brands and Southern Africa 6%. 

The Top 100 is dominated by technology and electronic brands (29%), consumer (non-cyclical) (19%), apparel (15%), automobile (8%), food (7%) and sports & fitness (5%) categories are the top categories.

Gécamines, Katanga Group Enter Settlement Agreement

Gécamines, together with its subsidiary Société Immobilière Du Congo ("SIMCO"), entered into a settlement agreement with Katanga Mining Limited and some of its affiliated companies making up the Katanga Group as well as their joint company Kamoto Copper Company (KCC).

Under the terms of the Agreement, the following goals and results are targeted, among others:

  • KCC's net equity will be restored in accordance with applicable laws ;
  • KCC's indebtedness towards the GLENCORE group will be reduced from 9 billion USD down to 3.45 billion USD as at 1 January 2018;
  • Interest rates applicable on intra-group loans are revised and shall no longer exceed 6% per year;
  • On the basis of KCC's current business plan, as early as the 2019 fiscal year, GÉCAMINES will start, for the first time, receiving dividends, which assessed cumulated amount should exceed 2 billion USD over the next ten years;
  • The profits will allow for the payment of corporate taxes being likely to significantly contribute to the replenishment the Congolese State's treasury;
  • A better valuation, in the future, of GÉCAMINES' contribution of the copper and cobalt deposits to the partnership through a significant increase of the amount per ton of the pas de porte, from 35 USD to 110 USD, and which can reach 170 USD in certain scenarios;
  • A significant increase of the valuation of GÉCAMINES' ownership in KCC, which value was until then nil due to the high level of indebtedness of the company;
  • The waiver by KCC to the benefit of the JORC certified reserves amounting to 3,992,185 tCu and 205,629 tCo (the "Reserves"), releasing GÉCAMINES from its obligation to deliver the Reserves or, failing that, to pay a counter-value of a maximum amount of 285 million USD;
  • The payment by the KATANGA GROUP of a settlement indemnity (150 million USD) in favor GÉCAMINES; and
  • The withdrawal by GÉCAMINES and SIMCO, at closing, from the judicial proceeding initiated before the Commercial Court of Kolwezi on 20 April 2018.

Gécamines welcomes the outcome of the discussions with the Katanga Group and its majority shareholder Glencore Plc, and the new foundations now set for the partnership, with a view to an effective sharing of wealth, with immediate financial benefits for all the stakeholders, and in particular the Democratic Republic of the Congo and the affected communities. GÉCAMINES hopes that upcoming negotiations with other partners and companies will be conducted in a similar open and respectful climate, and will reach the same satisfactory outcome.

Siemens, Anglo American Platinum Collaborate On Skills Development In Africa

Currently, one of the most debated topics influencing innovation is digitalization and its impact on the future of employment. It is met with equal parts excitement and trepidation. No matter how you look at it, digital transformation and a truly connected global economy is already upon us.

Siemens (www.Siemens.com) has provided automation equipment and industrial networks to assist Anglo's Engineering Skills Training Centre (ESTC). One of the pillars of Digitalization is industrial networks and security and it is crucial that these engineers understand the role of this technology in the future of mining.

As a leader in automation we are continuously expanding our leadership role in Industrial Digitalization. There is an opportunity, especially in Africa to embrace new and exponential technologies combined with human talent to accelerate industrialization and drive economic growth.

"We are proud to be supporting Anglo American Platinum to advance skills and opportunities in Africa," explains Sabine Dall'Omo, CEO for Siemens Southern and Eastern Africa.

Gary Humphries, Anglo American Platinum's Executive Head for Processing was appreciative of Siemens completion of yet another skills project at the ESTC. In his address, Gary said Siemens and Anglo American Platinum have been in partnership since 2010 and have seen approximately 298 artisans successfully trained and qualified at this centre.

“This vital contribution by Siemens to ESTC will significantly contribute towards the development of the human resource capabilities of our artisans and will help broaden the thinking of the students to explore new career capabilities. We celebrate the handover of the Siemens Simatic Wall and look forward to the role it will play in training the current and next generation of skilled artisans."

We are ramping up our commitment to the region to meet our customer's needs, expanding our portfolio for digital enterprises, supporting our customers in the manufacturing and process industries with digitalization, customization and efficiency improvements and investing in equipping our future generation with the right skills," ends Sabine.

Distinguished Extractives Lecture To Discuss Social Development, Investment

By Malise Otoo

The West African Institute of Mining, Metallurgy & Petroleum (WAIMM) will on April 5 at the Ghana Academy of Arts and Sciences present this year’s Distinguished Mining lecture.

This distinguished lecture presents participants with the understanding and information for the promotion of mineral development and redirection of government’s focus to achieve sustainable economic growth through minerals-led investments.

Similarly, these series of lectures are aimed at encouraging professionals to combine knowledge in related areas and blend with Ghana’s prospectively, strength of leadership, political stability and attractive social and cultural environment to attract investments to develop Ghana’s mining sector while giving an overview of the enabling factors for resource based industrialization to drive the economic growth of Ghana.

Again, it is to highlight strategies and provide industry inputs to attract investment to the minerals sector to re-examine the adequacy of Ghana’s institutional capability to carry out promotional activities in the wake of intense competition for investment capital.

In recent times, Government has intensified its fight against illegal Mining or Galamsey in what it describes as "Operation Vanguard".

Four Hundred security men since last year were drawn from the Ghana Police Service and the Ghana Armed Forces and deployed to counter the activities of illegal miners in the Ashanti, Western and Eastern Regions of the country.

However, Government is determined to establish an alumina refinery and expand the VALCO smelter, the President, Nana Addo Danquah Akufo-Addo has assured and which WAIMM is in full support of.

He made this known during the 61st Independence Day anniversary, that work on the law establishing an Integrated Bauxite and Aluminium Development Authority is far advanced, and will be submitted to Parliament shortly.

Henry Antwi, Commercial and Technical Advisor - Minerals Development, Oman will be the speaker for this year's lecture and will lecture on the theme, "Developing Resource–based Industrialization to Drive Economic Growth in Ghana’.

UK Eying Africa’s Mining Infrastructure Development

The UK government and companies are to offer a holistic approach to infrastructure development in Africa after the introduction of the Africa Infrastructure Board.

The UK Department for International Trade (DIT), UK government and private sector presented the Africa Infrastructure Board on the sidelines of the Mining Indaba in Cape Town, South Africa.

The Africa Infrastructure Board is an initiative that brings together and puts the case forward for choosing the UK as an ideal partner not only to develop projects in the mining sector but to create a holistic solution that will benefit the wider community by developing the associated infrastructure around the project.

The High Commissioner of UK to South Africa, Nigel Casey, mentioned that the UK would be increasing their efforts to work closer with African governments and private sector.

Mining projects are much more than just mining, he said, and they don't work without the associated infrastructure. Without naming names, he mentioned that the UK was conscious that there is plenty of competition out there when it comes to offering comprehensive solutions to African partners.

"We felt the need to up our collective game," he said, "and create a new government industry partnership called the Africa Infrastructure Board, which brings together all the players in the UK whether that is government through DFID, or UK Export Finance, one of our best kept secrets, or the deep pockets of the Commonwealth Development Corporation (CDC), and private sector operators, all operating in one single place to offer an end to end solution."

Oliver Andrews, Chief Investment Officer at the Africa Finance Corporation (AFC) who was one of the panellists during the roundtable, noted how DFID, the UK's government development arm, was instrumental in developing the model currently being used in infrastructure project financing.

He also reiterated the importance of the City of London, especially as most contracts are generally governed by UK law. The support network in structuring these deals, that is the legal, capital raising and technical side in London plays a vital role.

Craig Sillars from the Department for Trade showcased a number of projects where opportunities in the mining sector are being structured in a way that truly develops the infrastructure and act as a catalyst to develop other sectors.

The UK DIT, for example, is working with a UK investor in Angola on resurrecting an iron ore mine. But as well as the mine they are developing a smelter, which will ensure in-country beneficiation of natural resources, and that will involve the extension of an existing railways, and the expansion of a port.

"There will be 600MW of power attached to that," he went on to add, "and 25,000 of agriculture land provided grow biomass to help provide charcoal for the smelter."

Interestingly, he said that the UK was looking at partnering with China on the Simandou Mine in Guinea once they take over the mine to help them develop a holistic solution to develop the local infrastructure and sharing with them the designs they have put together to ensure a sustainable project that benefits the local community as well as getting the high quality iron ore to market.

"The approach we are taking," he told the participants, "is to produce masterplans that will benefit the communities not only for the next four to five years but the next 60, which is what we are doing in Angola, and that when the mining project is finished the infrastructure will continue to benefit the whole region."

Francis Gatare, CEO of the Rwanda Mining Petroleum and Gas Board, had said that most of the Rwandan involvement with the UK had been through government, but that private sector interest was growing.

It was agreed that London would continue to be an important hub for investors in mining and in infrastructure, not only as a financial centre, but also for the legal and technical expertise it offered, and that the resurging interest from the UK to Africa can only be a positive development for both the UK and the African continent.

 

BUA Group Alleged To Be Using Militia To Mine In Dangote Site

The management of BUA Group has been using armed militia, soldiers and policemen to mine marble and limestone in mining sites allocated to the Dangote Group, the Ministry of Mines and Steel Development has alleged.

In a statement signed by the ministry's Permanent Secretary, Mohammed Abass, and made available, the ministry said the company had been using a combination of armed militia, soldiers and policemen to obstruct the ministry's team from executing the stop work order issued to the company in October.

The ministry's statement was in response to an open letter to President Muhammadu Buhari by the company alleging that a minister was involved in sabotaging its operations.

Abass said that in the records of the Ministry of Mines and Steel Development and the Nigerian Mining Cadastre Office, the BUA Group did not have a mining lease over the contentious site (No. 2541ML) and was therefore engaged in illegal mining.

He stated, "The ministry stands by the stop work order issued to the BUA Group and signed by the Permanent Secretary dated 17th of October 2017."

"The letter was issued after thorough investigation confirmed that the BUA Group was indeed engaging in illegal mining of marble/limestone at a mine pit located on geographical coordinates N070 21' 47.4' E0060 26' 51.8', while the run-of-mine is stockpiled at an area with geographical coordinates N070 21' 48.4'; E0060 26'37.2'."

"Clarification provided by the Mining Cadastre Office shows that the coordinates of the mine pit and RoM stockpile area fall wholly within the area of mining Lease No 2541ML belonging to Messrs Dangote Industries Limited."

Abass added, "The ministry had earlier in 2015 issued a stop work order on this same disputed site but the BUA Group disregarded the order and went ahead with its illegal mining activities, under heavy cover of armed soldiers, policemen and men of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps."

"The management of BUA also resisted the enforcement of the latest stop work order issued on October 17, 2017 using a combination of armed militia, soldiers and policemen to obstruct the team from the ministry in effecting the stop work order."

He added that the ministry would not compromise due process in its commitment to promote local and global investments in the Nigerian mining sector.

 

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