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Ikot Abasi Community Kicks Against Vandalisation Of ALSCON

Author: john on 25-09-2013, 14:12, views: 1 831

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The Ikot Abasi Community, host to Aluminum Smelter Company of Nigeria (ALSCON) has added its voice to the alleged vandalism going on in the plant, calling on UC RUSAL to suspend cutting of anode stems, and the proposed melting of their aluminium components for sale as ingots, as well as the sale of the stem nipples to a contractor which has already been identified and is on standby.

 

The community under the aegis of Mboho Ikot Abasi also called on ALSCON Managing Director Stanislav Kruglyashov to comprehensively address the various areas of concern, including arranging a facility tour of the plant for members of the community to enable them see things for themselves.

 

In the letter written to the management of RUSAL and dated August 2, 2013, which was signed by Engr. Dr. Donatus Uko President General and Elder Genesis Udoh, Secretary General the community also urged RUSAL to discontinue the stripping of the plant including the re-bagging of alumina and coke for sale as well as the dismantling of Electrical Bussbars Assemblies for sale.

 

“You will recall that we expressed deep concern regarding what appears to be the systematic cannibalisation of plant facilities in place of the outright procurement and replacement of any faulty or failed parts. It is certainly clear that this practice is not in the best interest of the plant particularly in terms of its long term profile”.

 

The community leaders expressed the hope that the management of the company would see the issues raised as of grave concern to the Ikot Abasi Community who proudly acknowledge  ALSCON as their inheritance and therefore urged the management to cooperate with them to sustain the mutual cordial relationship which has existed between both parties.

 

Recall that ahead of the September court hearing date at the Supreme Court on the fate of the company, indications emerged last weekend of plans by RUSAL to vandalise valuables in the plant and cripple production if the decision of the court does not favour them.

 

To this end, the Russian managers of the aluminium company RUSAL, have allegedly started dismantling stem rods and anodes used in the manufacture of steel ingots.

 

Recall that members of the staff union of ALSCON last week raised alarm over the vandalism and asset stripping perpetrated by the Russian managers.

Responding Tatyana Smirnova, Director PR/GR Department, ALSCON Nigeria, described the information as misleading and does not correspond to reality.

She said, “Presently ALSCON is cleaning its territory from unrealizable assets, obsolete and not suitable for use equipment which cannot be utilized for production of aluminium. In addition, I would like to emphasize that the acquired equipment is the property of RUSAL and makes a part of modernization program that was implemented from 2007 till 2012. RUSAL has put around $US159.4 million of its own investments into the plant” .

 

In a reaction, Spokesman of the Bureau of Public Enterprise (BPE) Chigbo Anichebe also denied the allegations, saying they were not true.

 

He said the BPE heard the same rumours a few weeks ago and after investigations discovered there was no truth in it.

 

According to Anichebe,  “ When the matter first came up, security agencies investigated the claims, and the  National Council on Privatisation (NCP) set up a joint team comprising the BPE, officials of the Office of the Attorney General of the Federation and officials of the Ministry of Mines and Steel to go to the plant and verify the information.

 

“ Members of that team went and came back with a report that no act of vandalism was taking place at the plant.  The claim was found to be spurious. Anyone can just take pictures from anywhere and claim it is ALSCON. But however, if the source of this new information is reliable, the BPE will investigate again”.

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