08 December 2020 By Georgina Humphrey
The Federal Government, says resuscitation of Ajaokuta Steel Company Limited and the National Iron Ore Mining Company Limited, NIOMCO, will commence soon.
A statement signed by the Director, Press of the Ministry of Mines and Steel Development, Itore Thomas, says the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Dr Oluwatoyin Akinlade, made this known while on a two-day working visit to the two companies.
According to the statement Akinlade was at the two companies to assess level of preparedness ahead of the visit of experts from Russia who will soon arrive the Country to commence technical audit of the two companies.
“Ajaokuta is the future, the bed rock of Nigeria development,” adding that the resuscitation must be done, and can be done.
“Ajaokuta without NIOMCO are like a car without tyres, hence efforts are being made to resuscitate both companies at the same time to achieve the desired result.”
It maintains that the Buhari-led administration will do everything possible to put both companies on track to start production in no distant time following doggedness of the two Ministers in the sector
who have being working assiduously to ensure the two companies function.
It commends management and staff of the companies for their commitment and sense of patriotism in safeguarding the assets by keeping them in good shape and the environment habitable in spite of the daunting challenges confronting them.
The statement calls on staff to brace up to new challenges on modern mode of operation in regards to new technologies after completion of the expected technical audit.
The Sole Administrator, NIOMCO, Nkechika Augustus, who explains that the mandate of the company is to provide the basic raw materials for iron and steel production, adds that NIOMCO is required to supply the Ajaokuta Steel Company Limited with 2.15 million tonnes of iron ore concentrate with iron (FE) content of 63 – 64% in its first phase of operation during which it is expected to produce 1.3 million tonnes of steel.
“The need to fully complete the rehabilitation of the plants and also acquire additional mining equipment early cannot be overemphasized.
Meanwhile, the Sole Administrator, Ajaokuta Steel Company Limited, Sumaila Abdul-Akaba, says staff are fully prepared to work with the Technical Audit Team and the Ministry to achieve set goals