Children Face Lead Poisoning in Nigeria

by Project Censored
Published: Updated:

There has been recent reporting on lead poisoning in Nigeria. Health consequences of unsafe gold mining in northwestern Nigeria has lead to  severe lead poisoning near the mines that’s killed hundreds of children and made thousands sicker. The gold deposits are in a remote part of the country, near the border with Niger.

Nigeria may be Africa’s largest oil producer but it imports most of its refined petroleum products. Bottlenecks at the docks, strikes among drivers of tanker truck and floods can send the Nigerian gasoline market into a tailspin. The mining shafts dropped randomly into the ground across an area about the size of two football fields. Women were cooking over open fires. Some miners were sleeping in rustic lean-tos made out of sticks covered with grain bags. There was the pungent smell of marijuana in the air, and the presence of a few stoned young men to confirm it. Not only are there no roads, electricity or cellphones here, there are no formal jobs. Several of the men said gold mining is their only way to make a living. The problem is that these unauthorized gold mines have been killing kids in the nearby villages.

Title: On The Road: Reporting On Lead Poisoning In Nigeria


Student: Ashley Girdler, Sonoma State University
Community Evaluator: Ian Burnham: owner of Burnham Composites