The federal government has been advised to halt the attempt by the Federal Ministry of Steel Development and other relevant agencies to transfer the ailing Ajaokuta Steel Company to foreigners, all in the name of revitalisation.
It could be recalled that the National Assembly Joint Committee on Steel Development recently passed a resolution to probe the $496 million paid by the federal government to an Indian firm, which failed to revitalise the Itakpe Iron Ore Company after three years.
But giving the advice, a civil society organisation, under the aegis of Social Integrity Network (SINET) said the move is against national interest as it must protect the national heritage.
SINET, in a press statement issued at the end of an emergency meeting held in Kaduna and signed by its national co-ordinator, Ibrahim Issah, noted that instead of this calamity, preference should be given to national companies who can run such plants, ensure employment generation, reduce imports and do away with siphoning our much-needed forex and mineral resources.
The CSO lamented that despite the presence of highly intellectual personalities such as university professors, industrialists, members of the National Assembly, seasoned administrators, captains of industries, and technical and financial consultants among others, “It is unfortunate that our leaders still allow foreigners to fool the entire nation with unrealistic proposals and business plans.
“We hereby advise the FG and its concerned ministries to carefully dig deep into their detailed project report, elaborated business plan, capital outlay and cash flow projections by involving independent agencies and champions of business here in Nigeria.
By Maryam Ahmadu-Suka,
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