The Governor of Oyo State, Seyi Makinde has said mining activities will continue in the state despite a deadly explosion that rocked some parts of Ibadan, the state capital, on Tuesday, January 16.
The explosion, which occurred at Adeyi Avenue in the Bodija area, killed three people and injured 80 others, according to the state government.
Several houses and cars on Dejo Oyeleye Street were also destroyed.
Makinde, who spoke in an interview on Channels Television’s Politics Today on Wednesday, said he would not adopt a “knee-jerk reaction” to the incident, which he blamed on illegal miners who stored explosive devices in one of the buildings in Bodija⁶.
“My approach has been a little bit different. I will not go out to ban mining activities because there are people who are legally mining in the state. They may be international investors. You will give the impression that this is a lawless environment where we will not obey our contracts, what we signed with people. It is a difficult route to take. When we are swimming through the situation we have found ourselves, we will not have a knee-jerk reaction to the issue,” he said.
He added that his government was on top of the situation, as President Bola Ahmed Tinubu moved to help the state. He also said that his government had provided temporary shelters for the victims and their families.
The governor expressed his condolences to the families of the deceased and the injured, and assured them of the government’s support. He also called for calm and urged the residents to cooperate with the security agencies and the emergency responders.
The incident has raised concerns about the safety and regulation of mining activities in the state, which is rich in mineral resources such as gold, tantalite, iron ore, limestone, and marble.