President Muhammadu Buhari

By M. Peter – Jos

Northern Governors’ Forum has expressed delight at the commitment of the federal government to revamp the Ajaokuta Steel Company in Kogi state.

The forum says the decision to resuscitate the company after over four decades demonstrates President Muhammadu Buhari’s focused leadership and desire for the country’s economic growth.

It would be recalled that the Ajaokuta Presidential Project Inauguration Team (APPIT) was constituted by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Mr. Boss Mustapha to help revamp the company in line with the recent agreement reached with Russia to resuscitate the steel company.

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However, the Forum in a statement through its Chairman and Governor of Plateau State, Simon Lalong, signed by Lalong’s Director of Press and Public Affairs, Makut Macham commended President Buhari for remaining focused in fulfilling his desire to see that the complex, which has been moribund for about four decades, comes to life.

Lalong said, “We note with great delight the unwavering resolve of Mr. President to see that this complex which has been comatose for decades comes becomes productive to help in the industrialization of the country and boosting manufacturing. This dream when realised will not only create jobs, but also assist the nation to add value to its raw materials for domestic use and export.”

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Lalong said the Northern Governors Forum noted that despite the fight against COVID-19, President Buhari remained “committed to the realization of the aspirations of Nigerians to see that this national project is finally completed and put to use for the development of the nation,” and assured the President of the full cooperation of the Northern Governors’ Forum in seeing to the actualization of this national priority, which has defied previous attempts.

The inauguration of the Ajaokuta Presidential Project Inauguration Team (APPIT) is part of the implementation of the agreement reached between President Buhari and his Russian counterpart President Vladimir Putin during the Russia-Africa Summit last year in Sochi, where they agreed on the resuscitation of the Ajaokuta Steel Plant through a Government-to-Government agreement with funding from the Afreximbank and the Russia Export Centre.