House of Representatives member and Chairman, House Committee on Mining, Hon. Gaza Gbefwi has expressed concern over the dangers host communities are exposed to by extracting industries.
Gbefwi decried the increasing death rate of host communities due to indiscriminate disposal of chemical waste and minig activities.
The house of representatives member stated this in Abuja, on Wednesday at the West African Mining Host Communities Indaba organised by the Global Rights in collaboration with Africa Coalition for Corporate Accountability (ACCA), with theme, Insecurity and minerals governance in West Africa: Building mechanism for the protection of mining host communities.
According to Gbefwi "the host communities are paying with their blood and lives for the ongoing mining activities in their communities which is supposed to better their lives, inshort it is a deploring sight.
"There is an impending disaster, whether we like it or not. We are going to have more craters being dug in various places.
"We are nonchalant because it has not reached us yet, when you look at the amount of mineral licenses that have been collected, the exponential rate, it goes to show that we are getting more aware of where mining activities is happening.
"You hear about forest reserves, but now are being destroyed by mining activities. We have to ensure that host communities are protected to develop the sector from artisanal status to meet global standardisation.
"Mining industries must ensure to provide basic amenities to their host communities like roads, schools to enjoy the dividend of resources extracted from their lands.
He disclosed that two bills have been introduced in the house, with one scaling through first reading, the Nigeria mineral and mining bill and the Nigeria mining company bill.
"This bill also seek to create an inspectorate for the mining agencies with 109 offices situated in each Senatorial district of Nigeria, with funding from the allocation accrued from solid minerals.
"In this bill we have considered the host communities, such that a large percent will be givent to them for the development of their land".