FG Urged To Revive Ajaokuta Steel Plant


An educationist, Professor Anthony Aliche, has advised the Federal Government to give special attention to the development of the Ajaokuta Steel Rolling Mill in Kogi State to stimulate economic growth in the country.

Aliche, a visiting lecturer at the University of Science and Philosophy in Virginia, U.S., who made the call in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Aba on Sunday, said the plant could generate more than 10,0000 jobs if it is properly managed to operate at its full capacity.

He told the government to make revitalisation of the plant a top priority to create more jobs, reduce unemployment and earn foreign exchange through the development of iron and steel at the rolling mill.

Aliche said the plant was strategic to the development of Nigeria’s economy as it would go help to bring down the cost of iron and steel in the country.

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He criticised government for turning down the N500 million take-off grant requested by the management of the plant whereas the government could afford to give N87 billion to INEC to conduct the last general elections.

According to him, the late Dr Michael Okpara established a modern ceramic company at Umuahia to boost the economy of the defunct Eastern Region.

Aliche pointed out that governors in the South East zone of the country had similarly, failed to revitalise Nigercem, which he said could have improved the economy of the South East geo-political zone.

The academic noted that raising funds to revalitise the company was not a problem for the governors but that the problem was “the sharing of offices by the governors”.

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