The Honourable Minister Of State, Mines and Steel Development,Dr. Uchechukwu Sampson Ogah, has received in audience the Executive Members of The Economic Strategic Growth And Development Initiative Of Africa (ESGADIA), led by Chairman Of The Board, Prof Patrick Lumumba and Maazi Obinna Agommuo, the Founder and Executive Director.
They took opportunity of their courtesy call to congratulate The Honourable Minister who is also a member of the noble African Economic Development group and to present him with research materials on the way forward in key mining areas and funding opportunities.
Dr. Uchechukwu Sampson Ogah used the occasion to reveal to the team some of the plans and strategies being put in place to ensure that the mining sector takes its rightful place in Nigeria. Some of the plans he said is aimed at making the Ministry Of Mines And Steel Development the Star Ministry of President Muhammadu Buhar’s regime and to create millions of jobs for Nigerian youths.
He told his visitors of the determination of his minister’s colleague, whom he refers to as “My Brother”, to put everything in place to aid their plan.
Speaking about their plan to bring Ajaokuta Steel Rolling Mill back on stream, Dr. Ogah said they were more than committed to make it happen because it will be part of President Muhammadu Buhar’s legacy.
In his words, ” Ajaokuta when back on stream will create five hundred thousand (500 000) direct jobs, in addition to ten (10) draftsmen required to work with each operator on the metallurgical machines; thereby bringing the total number of those to be employed to over five million. This will be strategic to meeting the mandate given to ministers by President
Muhammadu Buhari to create hundreds million jobs in the next ten years “
He also said “we have a plan to establish gold refinery, ensure standards in the sector amongst other things we will have to tackle”
Lamenting the decline of the mining sector and the need to ensure standardisation, Dr. Uchechukwu Sampson Ogah said “the focus is to reduce the exportation of raw minerals and to begin to make them into Finished Goods. And my brother and I are determined to ensure Best global practices in the industry.”
He also said he was happy that “the Staff of the ministry are positively motivated to help us push our agenda.”
Prof Patrick Lumumba after introducing members of his delegation, told the Honourable Minister Of State, that they were happy that he is a member of their group and that their coming was to present him with research materials relating to the sector and to seek for collaboration with his ministry.
Maazi Obinna Agunmuo, the Founder and Executive Director in his speech told Dr. Uchechukwu Sampson Ogah, that “Mines And Steel Development sector is the future of Nigeria’s development and key to housing development in away that the minerals needed for cheap cement production are within this ministry’s purview.”
He lamented the high cost of cement when the opportunity exist for cheaper production that could lead to price fall below a thousand naira.
He informed him of a plan by ESGADIA to attract investors in cement production who may be willing to establish factories in six geopolitical zones of the federation and as well make housing cheaper and help reduce the twenty five million housing units deficit.
Maazi Obinna Agommuo also supported The Honourable Minister’s view on the need to establish gold refinery and other products processing plants within the sector, which will create jobs for Nigerian youths and bring more revenue into the coffers of the federation.
Dr. Uchechukwu Sampson Ogah led the delegation to the office of the Honourable Minister Of Mines And Steel Development, Arch. Olamilekan Adegbite, who also had brief interaction with them.
Prof Patrice Lumuba told The Honourable Ministers that they are expecting them to utilize their wealth of experience along with President Muhammadu Buhar and other members of his cabinet to lift the nation and the continent of Africa out of poverty .
The courtesy visit ended on a friendly note as the Ministers exchanged pleasantries with the delegation and promised to work with the organisation going forward.