Minister faults NEMA for issuing licenses without consulting the ministry

By Samuel Ssebuliba.

The ministry of energy and mineral development has faulted the National Environment Management Authority for issuing sand mining licenses to several companies without consulting the line ministry as stipulated in law.

Yesterday ministry officials led by the state minister for minerals Peter Lokeris appeared before parliament’s committee on Public Accounts to answer queries raised in the auditor general’s report of 2014/15 regarding regulation and monitoring of the mining sector.

MPs on this committee chaired by Angeline Osege accused the officials of neglecting their duties by letting sand extraction go on without any regulations.

The commissioner mines Agnes Alabatold the committee that they never issued any license for sand mining.

While minister Lokeris said that to address this loop hole, they are pushing for amendment of the Mining Act 2003 to incorporate Sand and other minerals to be regulated.

The committee has now summoned NEMA to present their case next week.