By Wole AyodeleÂ in Jalingo
One person was killed while six others sustained varying degrees of injuries in a clash between the police and illegal miners at Mayo Sine in Sardauna local government area of Taraba State.Â
The clash, which occurredÂ on ThursdayÂ also left a police officer whose name is yet to be ascertained missing while hundreds of makeshift tents housing the illegal miners were destroyed.Â
Speaking to Journalists in a telephone interview in JalingoÂ Friday, acting Chairman of the local government, Reverend Godswill Sol said a police task force team came to Mayo Sine last week Saturday to flush out the illegal miners at the mining site but were rebuffed by the miners.Â
According to him “Due to the large number of the illegal miners, the police team had to retreat, reinforced and stormed the mining siteÂ on ThursdayÂ and were still resisted by the illegal miners majority of whom are foreigners thereby making a clash inevitable”Â
The Chairman however told newsmen that he had information that one person was killed and six others injured while a policeman is said to be missing while about 100 makeshift tents were destroyed.
“Information available to me indicate that one person was killed, a police officer is missing and six persons who sustained injuries during the clash are receiving treatment at the Gembu General Hospital. I have been told that about 50 to 100 makeshift tents of the illegal miners were burnt by the police during the raid. We thank God the situation did not escalate and the area in question is now calm,” he said.
Confirming the incident, the State Police Commissioner, Mr.Â Dave Akinremi told Journalists that he deployed his men to the area on the instruction of the state government following reports of illegal mining activities taking place in the area.Â
He equally confirmed that one person was killed in the clash and a police officer still missing while six persons sustained injuries and were currently receiving treatment at Gembu General hospital.
The State governor, Darius Ishaku had raised the alarm at different foraÂ and drew the attention of the federal government to the activities of illegal miners in Sardauna as well the attendant loss of revenue running into billions of naira.
The governor however told Journalists in an interview when he returned from a business trip to China that Chinese investors would soon be in the state to invest in the mining sector.