The Ajaokuta iron and steel project may end up a mirage if N3bn is not provided for reactivation of the 21 plants next year, Chairman, Senate Committee on Solid Minerals, Mines and Steel Development, Senator Tanko Almakura, has said.
He told reporters in Abuja Saturday that the N3bn required to facilitate the engagement of experts from Russia for reactivation of the 21 plants in the Iron and Steel Complex was not included in the 2021 budget earmarked for the Ministry Mines, Steel and Solid Minerals.
He said he had made presentation to that effect to the Senate Committee on Appropriation during presentation of the 2021 budget estimates of the Ministry to the committee on Thursday last week.
“Nigeria has spent a lot on the Ajaokuta project than to allow just N3billion to make her decades old efforts a mirage.
“Resuscitation of Ajaokuta is key to Industrialization and development of the country. The Mines, Steel and Solid Minerals Ministry appealed to us during budget defence, to effect Appropriation for the N3billion.
“Since we cannot on our own as joint committees on Mines , Steel and Solid Minerals , increase the enveloped budget presented to us by the Ministry , we pushed the appeal to the Appropriation Committee for the required appropriation .
“The N3billion is very necessary to be provided for in saving the Iron and Steel Project from total comatose,” he said.