Lubango — More than 3,000 foreign illegal miners who worked in Malanje, Lunda Norte and Lunda Sul were repatriated, from March to June this year, as part of the first phase of the ‘Micro Operation Extension’ carried out by the Angolan authorities.
According to the Minister of State and Head of the Military House of the President of the Republic, Francisco Pereira Furtado, 57 industrial dredgers with extraction capacity greater than of conventional production were also dismantled.
Francisco Pereira Furtado, who was presenting the results of the repatriation actions, on Wednesday, in Lubango, added that in the second stage, the operation was extended to the provinces of Huambo, Bié and Cuanza Sul and in the third to the provinces of Huíla, Namibe, Cunene and Cuando Cubango.
The official considered the results satisfactory for the country, stating that, once completed, there will be a general review meeting.
“We have seen that foreigners carry out mining activities in the country and do not invest in anything in the social sector, but they acquire large properties in their countries, and Angola loses a lot with this illicit action of diamond exploration”, he highlighted.
He suggested that, the Ministry of Mineral Resources, Oil and Gas must create mechanisms for the reorganization of the informal sector, namely diamond extraction cooperatives and the control of this production.
Asked about the mining of mineral resources in Huíla, the Minister of State stated that the operation served to verify this reality and the environmental degradation caused by the activity.
Francisco Pereira Furtado said that they ended up touching areas that were not within the scope of the operation, such as logging.
In view of the situation observed, he said that some measures had been taken, including the processes instructed by the command post and to be presented to the Public Ministry.
According to Francisco Pereira Furtado, to stop the wave of illegal miners it is necessary to have greater control of the territory, by municipal administrations and provincial governments and by National Security and Defense bodies in the efficient control of land, sea and borders. rivers.
Operation Extension also aims to better control and monitor forests and environmental and biodiversity conservation areas.
The assessment of the third stage of Operation Expansion also served to analyze the stability of the borders in the southern region and the level of environmental degradation caused by mining in the country.
As part of strengthening the mechanisms of illegal immigration and illicit mining trafficking in Angola, the Head of State created, through Presidential Decree 298/17 of 27 November, the Interministerial Commission to lead the process of stabilizing mining areas and at the same time allowing the control of national land, sea and river borders.
A similar action, called Operation Transparency, took place from 2020-2022 across the country. MS/MS/DOJ