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Miners Flee OAU Land After Public Outcry

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Following a public outcry over mining activities on a parcel of land belonging to the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Osun State, the miners have fled the mining sites.

The mining activities were said to be illegal, as the miners’ operations were reportedly without any approval.

Reports about the illegal mining activities on the OAU land broke out last week, and it generated reactions from stakeholders who wondered why such would be going on on a university land without any step by the management to stop.

It was gathered that the mining activities had been going on for two weeks before some residents of the area alerted the general public.

The stakeholders accused the OAU management of complicity in the illegal mining activities, stating that it would be difficult for anybody to start mining on a university land without the consent of the authority or conspiracy with some individuals.

They condemned the illegal mining activities, describing it as injurious to the students, staff and community at large.

It was observed that one of the mining sites located at old Ede road, Ile-Ife was deserted.

However, the damage done by the illegal miners was visible, as the land has been desecrated and the water polluted.

It was also observed that there was a security post for some local security operatives who sources said were manning the entrance to the community where the illegal mining was taken place.

Speaking OSUN DEFENDER, a source privy to the illegal mining activities, accused the OAU management of being economical with the truth for face saving purpose.

According to the source who preferred anonymity because of the sensitivity of the matter, the security team of the University always patrol the community road, stating that they couldn’t deny knowledge of the illegal miners’ existence.

He disclosed that the miners were operating on the land for a second time, adding that they had operated on same land around June 2022.

The sources said: “I do not want to believe that the school management was not aware of the illegal mining activities going on here. They are just trying to save face or maybe those behind it are powerful people.

“The institution has its own security team headed by the Chief Security Officer. The security team always come to this side. Will the security team tell us they didn’t see anything during those periods?

“These miners spend more than two weeks here and some staff of the University do pass this place daily, will they also claim ignorance of what was happening here?

“This is the second time the miners would feast on this land. They first came around June 2022. I believe if they had been stopped that time, they wouldn’t have come back.”

A parent of one of the OAU students, Mr Afolabi Adebayo, while speaking with OSUN DEFENDER in a telephone conversation, called for an independent investigation on the matter to ascertain the level of damage done on the land.

Adebayo said independent investigation would allow the public to know those who are culpable in the illegal mining activities.
He said: “I think the best solution here is for an independent investigation to allow the public to know what really went on in that place.

“As a parent, I am worried because some reports said the degradation might cause contamination of the water if not adequately attended to and I hope the university will do that on time.

“Also, the investigation would fish out the culprits and also find those who mined without consent on the land. We need to know what fully transpired over there.”

 

Source: Osun Defender


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