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Dogara Visits Ajaokuta Complex and the hope of reviving the multi million steel Company

Dogara Visits Ajaokuta Complex and the hope of reviving the multi million steel Company

Ajaokuta Steel Company is Nigeria leading steel company. Guided by a philosophy to produce safe, sustainable steel, it is the leading supplier of quality steel products in all the major economic sectors including construction, packaging and wire drawing/nail making industry.

The Speaker, House of Representatives, Hon. Yakubu Dogara has called on the Government of President Muhammadu Buhari for the completion of Ajaokuta Steel Company to enhance the economy of the country.

He made this statement while he was on an oversight visit to the steel company on 12th February, 2018, in Ajaokuta, Kogi State, he stated that the lingering surrounding the completion of the complex is not only awful but an embarrassment to the Nation.

It could be recalled that on two different occasion the company was concession without positive development. In June 2003, former President Olusegun Obasanjo conceded Ajaokuta steel to Messrs SOLGAS ENERGY of USA on a 10-year tenure; in August 2004, the Federal Government terminated the SOLGAS Agreement due to non-performance.
In 2004 and 2005, the Obasanjo administration, again, granted another concession to Global Infrastructure Nigeria Limited (GINL) an India company for the operation of Ajaokuta steel and the Nigeria Iron Ore Mining Company (NIOMCO) at Itakpe in Kogi.

However, the Indian company did not live up to federal government's expectation in managing the two companies.

Consequently, the late Umaru Yar'Adua administration was compelled to revoke the contract in April 2008 without meeting the requirements of the clauses built into the agreement.

The Indian company thereafter took Nigerian government to arbitration court in London, which also crippled the two firms.

In 2016, President Muhammadu Buhari fulfilled his campaign promise on Ajaokuta steel by settling the legal bottleneck surrounding the companies out of court.

However, the federal government signed modified concession agreement with GINL to enable the firm to retain the National Iron Ore Mining Company, Itakpe.

The modified seven-year concession agreement was signed on August 1, 2016, while the federal government took over the Ajaokuta steel.

Mr speaker further ruled out similar policy on the company as an avenue of giving out the assets to stripers.

Any well meaning Nigerians that visit the ASCL "cannot but shed tears" and a visit of foreigners would amount to confirmation of the country as "shithole" as recently pronounced by the United States President.

He assured Nigerians that as far as the Lower Chamber of the National Assembly is concern "Anyone who try to re-introduce concessioning as a way forward will definitely have problem with us at the house."

He promised that whatever it would take for the plant to be brought back to life for the benefit of all Nigerians, will be done to alleviate the economy problem, enhance development and reduce unemployment to a bearing minimum.

"We are aware of local and international conspiracy against the plant, but we are determined to get the money from every angle to complete it. We believe if the company is been put to work, it's going to have an edge for local manufacturers.

Hon Emmanuel Egwu representing Idah Federal Constituency thank the speaker for his leadership quality and promised that the state would support government policy in revamping the complex.

The Governor of Kogi State, Alhaji Yahaya Bello advocated for the deployment of recovered looted funds towards the completion of the plant. He stated further that the money looted by an individual is more than enough for the completion of the company

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has said that the Federal Government has resolved all legal issues that have halted operations at the Ajaokuta Steel Company.

He made this known in Lokoja on Tuesday during the State Economic and Investment Summit in 2018.

We thanks all the National Assembly members from the state for this singular efforts of ASCL.

SULE ISA AKAGWU KPALEKO

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