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SS-ICT4D Week 2018

Friday, December 22, 2017

Mining Lease Jam: BUA lambasts Dangote over falsehood

The BUA Group has lambasted Dangote group over recent publications seeking to further its cycle of alleged misinformation on the mining dispute between the duo, describing it as falsehoods and bigger lies, reports ITRealms.

Group Head, Corporate Communications, O'tega Ogra, told ITRealms that BUA management views with disdain, further attempts by the Dangote Group to play to the gallery in the dispute over the Mining Areas covered by Mining Leases ML18912 and ML18913.

“BUA wishes to restate without equivocation that it has never laid claim to ML2541 as our operations covered by ML18912 and ML18913 are in Obu, Okpella, Edo State and not Okene, Kogi State where Dangote’s license 2541 is sited.

“As Dangote has asserted, BUA’s licenses for ML18912 & 18913 were issued in 1997 and their ML2541 issued in 2016 (AICO, Dangote Group’s predecessor-in-title, claims to have received theirs in 2008). How can Dangote then claim to be in possession when even their predecessor-in-title, AICO, was issued its license 10years after BUA’s licenses was issued and two years after the completion and commencement of production at our over $1billion Obu Cement Factory?

“In any event, AICO had instituted a suit at the Federal High Court, Lokoja claiming to assert its title to ML2541. Whilst that was pending, AICO, against all known principles of law, transferred its title to Dangote. It is also worthy of note that Dangote further applied to the courts to assert their rights to ML2541. How can a party who claims to be in possession ask the courts to assert the rights to their license?

“It should also be noted that this is asides the notorious fact that our license was initially issued in 1976 to Bendel Cement Company, one of our predecessors-in-title. (See attached the 3 licenses and also, a publication from the Ministry of Mines in Thisday, revalidating our ML18912 AND ML18913 in Okpella, Edo state and royalty payments to the Federal Government in respect of ML18912 and ML18913).

“With reference to Dangote claims that we applied for a lease in 2013, to our knowledge, we are not aware of any application of this sort. In any event, it is common knowledge that participants in the mining industry continuously apply for mining rights on a regular basis and if/when we were made aware of such, we discontinued such a process.

“To further buttress our point, the Nigerian boundary commission’s report of 2006 clearly states that Obu, Okpella is in Edo State and not Kogi State. Even as recent as July 2017, the ministry confirmed through a letter to BUA, our right to possession of licenses ML18912 and ML18913 up till 2017.

“Isn’t it rather strange that Dangote who claims to have acquired Mining Lease 2541 from AICO in 2015 now seeks to interfere with BUA’s mining rights in ML 18912 and ML 18913 in Obu, Okpella in Edo State? It is also instructive to state that Dangote has on several occasions attempted to obtain injunctive reliefs from the Federal High Court, Benin, Edo State, in the course of the pending litigation, but the Court declined making such injunctive Orders because whilst Dangote claims right to Mining Lease 2541 located in Okene, Kogi State, BUA claims right to Mining Leases 18912 and 18913 located in Obu, Okpella, Edo State. “


Ogra lamented that Dangote has now resorted to using other means to achieve what it could not legally achieve in a court proceeding before a Court of competent jurisdiction.

Isaac Oyimah/GEE

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Pix: Abdulsamad Rabiu, Chairman/CEO, Bua Group and his counterpart at Dangote Group, Alhaji Aluko Dangote.

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