By Toba Suleiman
Ekiti State government has taken delivery of equipment worth N400 million meant for the resuscitation of the Ire Burnt Brick Factory, which commences operations next month.
Taking the delivery at Ire Ekiti, the State Commissioner for Commerce, Industry and Cooperatives, Otunba Remi Bodunrin, said the state government, in partnership with Oodua Investment Group, decided to revive the moribund brick factory.
This, according to him, was so that it could generate income for the government and Oodua Investment group as well as employment for the teeming unemployed population.
According to Bodunrin, the delivery of the equipment was a step towards restoring life to the factory as it would begin a test-run operation in October 21 while full operation would commence in November this year.
He hinted that the factory, on completion, would employ no fewer than 300 indigenous workers, and assured that the state would not have problems marketing the products, which vary from clay roof tiles and burnt bricks among others, as the products were being produced only in two states in the country.
Restating the State’s commitment to giving adequate patronage to the factory, he added that the since the state was blessed with kaolin clay and other types of clay materials used for the production, there was no fear of sustainability of production when it commences full operation in November.
The Commissioner said the Belgian company, CERATEC, handling the resuscitation of the factory, would still run it; pending when the employed staff of the Ire burnt brick Industry would be sent abroad for training on production and maintenance of the factory.
Also speaking, the representative of Oodua group on the board of Ire Industry, Mr. Biodun Adedeji, said the equipment, meant to give life to the factory, was ordered from different parts of Europe, and added that expatriates who would fix the machines would arrive Ekiti State soon, even as Governor Fayemi has given a marching order that the factory be brought back to life by October.
The Ire burnt brick factory became moribund in 1998 but the Fayemi-led administration expressed its displeasure at the long years of the factory’s unproductive state and decided to revive it.