By Adedapo Adesanya The House of Representatives has called on the federal government to as a matter of urgency curb the menace of illegal mining activities in Ijesha land in Osun. This call followed the adoption of a motion by Mr Lawrence Ayeni on the floor of the House on Wednesday, in Abuja, saying that the actions of the illegal miners were robbing people of the state of their livelihood. In his motion, he noted that the Nigerian Minerals and Mining Act was passed into law on March 16, 2007, to regulate the exploration and exploitation of solid minerals in the country. He said that the Act vested the control of all properties and minerals in Nigeria in the state and prohibited unauthorised exploration or exploitation of minerals. Mr Ayeni observed that under the Land Use Act; all lands in which minerals had been found in commercial quantities were acquired by the federal government He added that any property with mineral resources shall pass from the government to the person by whom the mineral resources were lawfully won, upon their recovery. The lawmaker stated that over the past few years, certain individuals and unverified companies had embarked on exploration activities across Ijeshaland, and their activities had caused untold hardship to the villagers. According to him, the villagers had been forcefully displaced and dispossessed of their lands by the miners, adding that the excavation of the area could expose the people to environmental hazards. He said that the people could be unduly exposed to disasters such as; landslides, earthquakes, erosion, formation of sinkholes, loss of biodiversity and contamination of soil, among others. The lawmaker said if necessary measures were not put in place to check illegal mining, it could result in the breakdown of law and order, saying the original inhabitants of Ijeshaland being deprived of access to their heritage could embark on self-help to recover their lands. The House, therefore, mandated its Committee on Solid Minerals Development to liaise with the Federal Ministry of Mines and Steel Development to ascertain the authorised and licensed miners within Ijesha and mandated the team to report back within six weeks for further legislative action.