GRAND CONSPIRACY AGAINST AJAOKUTA STEEL - Uju Ayalogu's Blog for News, Reviews, Articles and More

Breaking News

Post Top Ad

Sunday 19 March 2017



Indians corner Nigeria’s iron ore mining company

Vaswani brothers’ Premium Steel angling for steel complex
’With ownership of Itakpe, Ajaokuta steel complex is history’

FG keeps mum

Indications were rife over the weekend that despite the recent historic resolution of Nigeria’s arbitration with the Global Steel Holdings Limited (GSHL), former concessionaire of Ajaokuta Steel Complex (ASCN), on August 1, 2016, at the London Court, respite may still not have come the way of Nigeria’s steel sector, which development had been stunted by over 40 years of failed attempts at transforming it from an iron ore producing nation to a steel manufacturing power.

For More:Visit Us at Uju Ayalogu's Blog

This came as a Community Rights Activist, Barr. Natasha Hadiza Akpoti, has alleged that her efforts at linking the Federal Government back to the original builder of the ASCN, TyazhPromExport (TPE) of Russia, had been rebuffed by the Ministry of Solid Minerals, even as she has noted that the purported settlement of the arbitration, which gave the concession of the National Iron Ore Mining Company (NIOMCO) Itakpe, to the Indian firm, implies that the reversion of ASCN to Nigeria will not guarantee successful revitalisation of the comatose steel complex.

She disclosed that when she made contact with the Russian contractors, TPE, “They expressed deep sadness at the manner in which ASCN was handled. TPE said their heart was poured into the project.

That never, in all of their works across the world, not even in India, did they build a steel city as big as the Ajaokuta complex.

“That it was sad Nigeria did not heed their warnings about the international conspiracies and Nigeria turned her back on them instead of seeing the bright future they dreamt for us. That we, by our own hands, allowed our economy to be trampled amidst negative interests by other powerful countries.

“That over the past years, they had tried reaching out to the Nigerian government to allow them come back and complete the project. Nigeria, did not respond positively.

“That they would want nothing more than to work to revive Ajaokuta and help Nigeria create jobs for its people and take itself out of poverty. Nigeria, they said must wake up from its slumber and be greater than ever before for itself and for Africa.”

Akpoti further alleged in an open letter to Nigerians on December 13, 2016, titled, ‘Corrupt Practices Surrounding Ajaokuta and Itakpe’ that the country had a good chance to reclaim both ASCN and NIOMCO, Itakpe, based on unequivocal evidence but that the activities of some highly placed Nigerians made it impossible.

But the Special Assistant on Media to the Minister of Solid Mineral, Olayinka Oyebode, who promised to send a detailed reaction on the allegations made by Ms Akpoti, however, told Sunday Telegraph at press time that the Kogi-born half Ukraine and half Nigeria lawyer turned activist, has vested interest and most of the media reports on her allegations have not attempted to unravel what those interests are.

Meanwhile, according to a recent announcement by the Federal Government, all the disagreements with GSHL had been resolved, averting payment of $501 million penalty by giving up the most prized asset in steel making -the National Iron Ore Mining Company (NIOMCO), Itakpe, to the Indian firm.

“Ajaokuta Steel Complex has now reverted to the Federal Government, effectively freeing the entity from all contractual encumbrances that had left it uncompleted and non-functional for decades, while GSHL retains NIOMCO,” the Federal Ministry of Solid Minerals said in a recent statement in Abuja.

Sunday Telegraph learnt that what the development implies is that GSHL will continue to tap iron ore from Itakpe and move it to Delta Steel which was in June 2015, taken over by Premium Steel, a company set up just months before the purchase of Delta Steel.

For More:Visit Us at Uju Ayalogu's Blog

Premium Steel is owned by a powerful Indian conglomerate headed by the Vaswani brothers (owners of the controversial Stallion group). Experts say Itakpe was set up as a captive mine to ASCN.

This was even as the original plan holds that iron ore would be moved from Itakpe to ASCN which would in turn distribute to other smaller rolling mills, Delta Steel inclusive. Akpoti fears that with GSHL as the owners of Itakpe, ASCN will become a sad history as there will be no ore to feed from.

“That means Kogi State will have no steel plant of its own ever again,” she said. But competent sources at the Ministry of Solid Minerals told Sunday Telegraph that the Federal Government is disposed to giving ASCN to Premium Steel, which will handle the iron ore produced from Itakpe for GSHL.

The source, which spoke on condition of anonymity, said that the thinking of government is that since Premium Steel will, by handling the iron ore from Itakpe and the Vaswanis, who own the company, are known to have the financial muscle to shell out the huge capital needed to revitalize the steel complex, it will be wise to hand over the moribund steel complex to them.

He, however, said that those not comfortable with the idea in the ministry, are worried that the implication of such an arrangement would mean giving ASCN through the back door to the controversial GSHL, owned by Mr. Primod Mittal, a kinsman of the Vaswanis.

One thing Premium Steel and GSHL have in common is that they had not had anything to do with steel before the two companies were formed and both have no affiliation with ArcelorMittal, which is the world’s renowned steel giant.

ArcelorMittal is owned by Lakshmi Mittal an Indian and a cousin to Mr. Primod Mittal. Reputed to be the second largest endowed in steel resources, Nigeria, in the late 70s, ushered in some Russian technicians and engineers to design the Ajaokuta Steel Plant and prospect more for possible exploration of the country’s iron ore deposits.

The vote was found in the reputation of the Eastern European country as being very adept in building steel plants. By 1971, the Nigerian Steel Development Authority was established by Decree No.9 to bring to reality a steel plant and by 1979, during the administration of Alhaji Shehu Shagari, TPE, a Russian leading engineering company, commenced construction works on the Ajaokuta steel company.

Are you an artiste? Do you want your music to go viral and reach a large number of audience? Promote your music and Submit your story  on by clicking here. For Advert Inquiries Tele/+44(0)7590363984 Subscribe to News!

ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. 2015-2017 @ Uju Ayalogu's Blog NIGERIAN NEWS
For More:Visit Us at Uju Ayalogu's Blog

Subscribe to Our Posts via Email

Share This

No comments:

Post a Comment

Listen to This Beautiful New Talent - Winter Wolf - Singing "Midnight"

Post Bottom Ad