Workers to govt: revive steel industry
The Iron and Steel Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (ISSSAN) has said the death of the steel industry in the country has aggravated its unemployment problem.
Its Deputy-General Secretary, Adewale Okesola said unless the industry is revived, unemployment problem in the country would persist, arguing that the Ajaokuta Steel Company alone could employ over 140,000 youths.
He said: “If Ajaokuta alone can absorb so much unemployed Nigerians, then we can be sure that the other steel firms, if also revived, would employ much more.
“So, let the government ensure the revival of the steel companies scattered around the country. By the time Ajaokuta, Delta, Osogbo, Jos and Kastina steel firms are revived, we will not be talking of unemployment in the country.’’
Okesola added that apart from creating direct employment, the revival of the sector would also create indirect employment for millions of Nigerians.
According to him, the revival of the industry will definitely aid the growth of the new automobile industry and the transformation of the epileptic Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC).
He said: “The government knows the genesis of the nation’s calamity in terms of unemployment, except if they do not want to be sincere.
“If the government can be sincere and focused; if it can pump money into the steel industry, it will pick up and we will forget some of our current plagues.”
He said lack of commitment, corruption and politicisation of the steel sector, were responsible for its ruin, adding that the problems had also hindered all efforts to transform the industry.
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