Hammed Shittu in Ilorin
Piqued by the huge amount expended on the Ajaokuta Steel Company, a professor of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Ilorin, Segun Mathew Adedayo, has advised the federal government to stop further expenditure on the steel company.
Alternatively, he said a concessionaire could be invited to run the company for a defined number of years.
Adedayo, disclosed this while delivering the 184th inaugural lecture of the University of Ilorin held at the main auditorium of the institute recently.
The theme of the lecture was: “Optimal Application of Materials Joining Towards Rapid National Development.”
According to him, “a nation could be industrialised without necessarily being a producer of iron and steel.”
He said, “This is possible by importing the relevant raw materials for processing and even though billions of naira had been expended on Ajaokuta steel company in the past 40 years, the country should stop further expenditure on equipment towards making it work.
“Negotiations should be made with established steel production companies internationally towards outright sales of Ajaokuta steel company.
“Alternatively, a concessionaire can be invited to run the company for defined number of years because the complexity of operation of a steel plant does not allow for successful operations as a government parastatal”.
Furthermore, Adedayo canvassed for, “forceful acquisition” of technological transfer for rapid nation’s development.
He said that, “the general notion about technological transfer is not realistic rather it demands forceful acquisition because the industrialised nations will not cheaply transfer their technology to any nation.
“It is however recommended that, creative ideas of metal products should be funded by Bank of Industry with single-digit interest loans and further taking steps to protect such markets through import restrictions.”
He, therefore, stressed the need for, “policies that will leave buyers with no alternative other than purchase of locally made goods are strongly important.”