By Mathias Okwe on July 5, 2015
Ajaokuta Steel complex
STAKEHOLDERS in the solid minerals sector have called on president Muhammadu Buhari to revive Ajaokuta steel mill, saying it is still a viable area for the nation’s economic growth.
The stakeholders, under the aegis of Progressive Miners Empowerment Association (PMEA) have written the President to be wary of a “clique of individuals”, who they alleged have deprived the sector of the desired growth for many years.
The President of the Association, Mr. Sunday Ekozin, who is also the Chief Executive Officer of a Jos based Geo-Minerals and Resources Limited, lamented Thursday that few individuals have held the mining sector hostage and have deprived it of generating over N1 trillion revenue annually and two million direct jobs.
According to him, the sector has hitherto failed to contribute to the Nation’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP), despite the N15 billion budgetary allocations for the sector in the last four years.
He urged the government to dismiss the report on Ajaokuta steel mill, saying, “it is still very viable”
He declared that after the federal government had invested about $7.2 billion in the complex; it was disheartening those past administrations made it impossible for the complex to become operational, in spite of the massive raw material availability and the large market for steel in Nigeria and the West African sub-region.