Fifteen suspected illegal gold miners were at the weekend arrested and paraded by the Ondo State Security Agency Network (Amotekun Corps) for mining gold illegally from 50 different locations in Owo Local Government area of the State.
The suspects are: Shuaibu Yahaya, Habbi Usman, Kabiru Waheed, Mohammed Nurudeen, Mohammed Sulaman, Ali Mustapha, Ismaila Wahab, Musa Zeehed, Gabbar Musa, Sule Adamu Abba Suleman, Usman Kebiru, Yahaya Danladi and Usman Ali Zekeri.
The suspects were apprehended by the Amotekun men in collaboration with local hunters working with Amotekun Corps.
The Hope reliably gathered that it took about four hours journey for the Amotekun Corps to forage into the forest where the suspects were picked, acting on intelligent information.
The Commander, Ondo State Amotekun Corps, Mr Adetunji Adeleye told The Hope that the arrest was part of the crackdown to end criminality in the State.
He said: “The arrest took place at a Forest reserve in Owo, it was in the course of the exercise we discovered the illegal mining locations. We noticed that they have gone far in 50 different locations where they were mining.
“Nobody would have believed that Ondo state have this quality of gold until we got to the locations where the gold robbers were living and performing illegal mining. Beyond the arrest, the culprits will be prosecuted.
In his confession, 30-year-old Kabiru Shuaib from Kebbi State who was a security guard said he was invited by his friend Yunisa, describing how they used local method of mining in the location saying” I have been performing the act since 2019.
I came looking for job and I was introduced by one of our leaders who is at large. He brought me to Ondo state for this job because I wanted to make some money.
“He told Amotekun that after digging very dip we got the black gold and we separated the sand from the gold with a flat sieve with a rug. The rug will do the separation as we pour the sand on it.
“I am the second best in getting the gold as it is a very high quality gold. We only get it out and send back home to our boss (names withheld) who sell them and later pay us.
“The gold in the land is of very high quality gold mostly we get 25 carats, 20 carats sometimes we get 15 carats gold. And we make good money.”
Also paraded were five suspected armed robbers who were terrorising travellers along the Benin-Owo road. One of the robbers who have a syndicate in Akure was apprehended in Warri.
“We also nabbed five armed robbery suspects who were operating along Benin -Akure road. And most times, it is early morning they strike. We worked on intelligence and sold a dummy to them and they were traced to Delta State where he was apprehended.