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When the mining process is not properly controlled, it can be a source of heavy metals pollution in the environment. The uptake of these heavy metals in edible parts of vegetables can be a direct source of the metals into the human food chain. This study assessed the concentrations of lead (Pb), manganese (Mn), zinc (Zn), copper (Cu), nickel (Ni) and chromium (Cr) in soil and vegetables obtained from nine (9) farms around mining sites in Mangu LGA. Concentrations of heavy metals in soil and vegetables were determined using atomic absorption spectrophotometer (AAS). The results revealed the concentrations of the heavy metals at the farms to be within the recommended maximum levels of world soils but were higher than their respective controls. This implies that the artisanal mining contributed to the increased values of these heavy metals in the environment. Also, the mean concentrations of the heavy metals at Mangu Halle mining site decreased in the order Mn > Zn > Cr > Cu > Ni > Pb > Cd whereas at Alogwom it decreased in the order Mn > Zn > Pb > Cu > Ni > Cr > Cd. The enrichment factor (EF) of the elements showed deficiency to minimum enrichment for all the heavy metals whereas the pollution index (PI) of the metals indicated very slight contamination to moderate pollution. The results of the heavy metals in the vegetables showed that the bioaccumulation of the metals followed a pattern: Zn > Cu > Pb > Cr > Cd > Ni. Levels of Cd, Pb and Ni in the vegetables were observed to be higher than the recommended limit for vegetables whereas Cu, Cr and Zn exhibited lower values than recommended standards. Thus, their consumption might pose health risk to consumers and therefore there is the need for proper monitoring of the illegal mining activities to reduce health risk and the extent of heavy metals contamination.

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