Thinking Out of The Box and Inter- Ministerial Co-Operation Resonate as Mr. President's Minister of Works and The Minister of Steel Development Brainstorm on Tapping into the Opportunities in Ajaokuta Steel Plant for The Development of Concrete Road Infrastructure in Nigeria
The Honourable Minister of Works, His Excellency Sen. Engr. Nweze David Umahi, CON and the Hon. Minister of Steel Development, Shuaib Audu have resolved to synergize and strategize in tapping into the opportunities in Ajaokuta Steel Plant for the development of road infrastructure in Nigeria.
This was part of the outcome of their inter-ministerial meeting held today, 21st November, 2023 at the Office of the Hon. Minister of Works, Federal Ministry of Works, Headquarters, Mabushi- Abuja and this is in keeping with the Renewed Hope Agenda of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, His Excellency, Sen. Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu GCFR who is doing everything possible to reverse the ugly trend of Nigeria's developmental history and revolutionize national economic development within the shortest period of time.
The far-reaching resolutions of the two Hon. Ministers underscored the imperative of coordination, cooperation coherence, and complementarity in the execution of Federal Government's action plans for national development.
Speaking on the outcome of their meeting, the Hon. Minister of Works said that the Ministry of Steel Development would play a major role in the road infrastructure revolution plan envisioned by Mr. President by providing more than 16% of the materials needed for the construction of Nigeria's roads in concrete pavement. He said that tapping into the opportunities in Steel Industry would not only create jobs and wealth for Nigeria's population, but it would also create a global market and encourage industrialization.
"How do we reactivate Ajaokuta Steel. We are going into concrete road, in this concrete road, about 16 percent of it is from Steel while 30 percent is cement. We need a lot of money to start but we decided to face it and God has given us an idea, we need about 35 billion dollars to start. If we start waiting for FG, it might become difficult. We did Return on Investment (ROI), the profit we could have made, part of it will go to bank interest, we are looking at commercial bank, but Federal Executive Council has to endorse it. If this could be done it means Mr. President is actually living to his words, and this is going to be possible."
The Hon Minister of Works also commended the Hon. Minister of Steel Development for his efforts in developing the steel sector, noting that steel industry is the bedrock of Nigeria's industrialization and the backbone that stimulates national development and economic boost for the industrial growth of any nation. He assured the Hon. Minister of Steel Development that his Ministry would work collaboratively in his efforts of enhancing the potentialities of Ajaokuta Steel Plant- the largest Steel Mill in Nigeria.
"Mr. President never made a mistake in his appointment, I call him a Divine President, and the most important thing is that our eyes are on the job”.
The Minister continued, “One of the renewed hope agenda of Mr. President is to think outside the box, Mr. President inherited a large chunk of debt from the past administration. The beauty about it is that he is not complaining, he knew how the country was before he took the job and how it is. The good thing is that if you have passion for something God will give you an idea”.
Earlier, the Minister of Steel Development said the meeting was robust and incisive “My mission is a wonderful one, I had a fantastic meeting initiated by the Hon. Minister of Works. We are seriously thinking outside the box to see how we can implement the Renewed Hope Agenda of Mr. President. What we came to discuss here is how to restart Steel production at Ajaokuta Steel Plant. The Hon. Minister of Works has made it very clear that the Federal Government is looking to develop over 30,000 kilometers of road and a large component of that will be from Steel wrought, and percentage of that Steel wrought will be produced in Ajaokuta. We came to have a discussion on how to implement the process for producing it in Ajaokuta within the shortest possible time".
The Hon. Minister of Steel Development emphasized the importance of the initiative by both Ministers and expressed hope that it would provide the needed economic boost for the nation, generate revenue and provide thousands of direct jobs for skilled and non- skilled technicians and hundreds of thousands of unskilled jobs in Nigeria. "And we are to achieve 2 or 3 three things , one to create job opportunity for Nigerians as a whole, two, to ensure that the corridor around the North Central Zone and around the Ajaokuta Warri axis is busy with activities and thirdly, the plant has been inactive for close to four decades and we are here to restart the plant within the shortest possible time”.
MINISTER DIRECTS CONTRACTORS TO GO BACK TO SITE, SETS TIME FRAME FOR PROJECTS DELIVERY
Hon. Minister of Works, H.E Sen. Engr. Nweze David Umahi CON with Contractors
HANDOVER CEREMONY OF THE NEW PERMANENT SECRETARY, FEDERAL MINISTRY OF HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT, DR. MARCUS O. OGUNBIYI, OUTGOING PERMANENT SECRETARY, FEDERAL MINISTRY OF WORKS AND HOUSING, MAHMUDA MAMMAN AND THE NEW PERMANENT SECRETARY, FEDERAL MINISTRY OF WORKS, YAKUBU A. KOFARMATA AT THE MINISTRY’S HEADQUARTER ON THE 12TH OF JANUARY, 2024
Handover ceremony of the new Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Housing and Urban Development, Dr. Marcus O. Ogunbiyi, outgoing Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Works and Housing, Mahmuda Mamman and the new Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Works, Yakubu A. Kofarmata at the Ministry’s Headquarter on the 12th of January, 2024