By Victoria Onehi
The Minister of Steel Development, Prince Shuaibu Abubakar Audu has reiterated Federal Government’s committment to ensure that Ajaokuta Steel Plant begin production for the industrialization of the country.
The Minister made this known during his maiden tour of the Ajaokuta Steel Plant on Wednesday.
The Minister who was accompanied by the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Dr. Mary A Ogbe, on the 3-day working visit,revealed that the Ministry of Steel Development is working on a Road Map that will contain a 3-Year Revival Plan for the Revitalisation of Ajaokuta Steel Plant.
He noted that in line with the President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s Renewed Hope Agenda, the administration is committed to ensure that the Steel Plant which has been moribund for about 45 years is resuscitated and begin production before the end of it’s tenure, noting that the Plant when revived, would be beneficial to all as it will create about 500 thousand jobs for the teeming Nigeria youths.
A statement from the Ministry disclosed that the purpose of the facility visit by the Minister was to ascertain the operational and none operational level of the Plant and make recommendations on how to turn the Plant around to begin to production, noting that production of steel sheets from the Ajaokuta Steel Plant would be a significant achievement for the administration, a feat that has not been achieved in over 45 years.
The Minister disclosed that though the task to get the Plant running is an arduous one, he solicited the support of all stakeholders, stating that with the support and sincerity of purpose of all stakeholders, success would be achieved.
In his welcome address, the Sole Administrator, Ajaokuta Steel Company Limited, Engr. Sumaila Abdul-Akaba, said the working visit would afford the Minister and Permanent Secretary first- hand information and investment opportunities that abound in the Plant.
Engr. Sumaila noted that the benefits that would accrue from the completed and operationalised Plant cannot be overemphasized, stating that the nation’s revenue generation from the project, when completed, commissioned and operational will have a huge impact on the accruals to the Federation Account as well as help galvanize development in Kogi as the host State and Nigeria in general.