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Russian investors flee ALSCON

Author: john on 19-03-2014, 02:03, views: 2 354

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Expatriate management team of the Russian company, UC RUSAL, currently operating the Aluminum Smelter Company of Nigeria, ALSCON, were reported to have fled the multi-billion naira plant, leaving behind, an army of aggrieved indigenous workers who had earlier taken the company to an industrial court in Calabar over unpaid salary arrears.

This was confirmed to Nigerian Pilot during a telephone interview with the Chairman, Steel and Engineering Workers’ Union of Nigeria, ALSCON chapter, Comrade Sunny James.

James corroborated report from the Mboho community under the leadership of Obong Amete Ntak, which alleged that the Russians are fleeing because of the possible consequences of their acts of stripping the assets of the company in a manner that smacks of fraud and deliberate attempt to destroy the plants.
 
Expatriate management team of the Russian company, UC RUSAL, currently operating the Aluminum Smelter Company of Nigeria, ALSCON, were reported to have fled the multi-billion naira plant, leaving behind, an army of aggrieved indigenous workers who had earlier taken the company to an industrial court in Calabar over unpaid salary arrears.

 

This was confirmed to Nigerian Pilot during a telephone interview with the Chairman, Steel and Engineering Workers’ Union of Nigeria, ALSCON chapter, Comrade Sunny James.

 

James corroborated report from the Mboho community under the leadership of Obong Amete Ntak, which alleged that the Russians are fleeing because of the possible consequences of their acts of stripping the assets of the company in a manner that smacks of fraud and deliberate attempt to destroy the plants.

 

It will be recalled that the sale of ALSCON was marred with serious controversy owing to what privatisation analysts described as ‘shady’ handover of the company to Russia’s UC RUSAL by Bureau of Public Enterprise, BPE, even when the bid for it was openly won by America’s BFIGroup.

 

"To protest the development, BFIGroup took BPE and UC RUSAL to court, and eventually obtained a Supreme Court judgment in their favour. While the matter was still pending in the court, BPE allowed UC RUSAL to commence operation in the company, thereby opening it up for vandalisation”, said an Mboho community member who did not want his name in print.

 

Meanwhile, abandoned indigenous workers of the company have dragged their employers to an industrial court sitting in Calabar, praying the court to compel the management to pay their outstanding salaries.

 

According to comrade James, the court issued UC RUSAL an injunction mandating them to pay the workers, adding that the management protested the order of the court, but the court re-affirmed their order.

 

"However, the Russians have tactically withdrawn their top management staff and moved them back to their home country. Nobody knows what they are up to, but we are aware of the massive asset stripping, which may be the reason they are fleeing, especially now that the country’s Supreme Court still stands on its judgment, which is in favour of the BFIGroup”, the union leader told Nigerian Pilot.

 
It will be recalled that the sale of ALSCON was marred with serious controversy owing to what privatisation analysts described as ‘shady’ handover of the company to Russia’s UC RUSAL by Bureau of Public Enterprise, BPE, even when the bid for it was openly won by America’s BFIGroup.

"To protest the development, BFIGroup took BPE and UC RUSAL to court, and eventually obtained a Supreme Court judgment in their favour. While the matter was still pending in the court, BPE allowed UC RUSAL to commence operation in the company, thereby opening it up for vandalisation”, said an Mboho community member who did not want his name in print.

Meanwhile, abandoned indigenous workers of the company have dragged their employers to an industrial court sitting in Calabar, praying the court to compel the management to pay their outstanding salaries.

According to comrade James, the court issued UC RUSAL an injunction mandating them to pay the workers, adding that the management protested the order of the court, but the court re-affirmed their order.

"However, the Russians have tactically withdrawn their top management staff and moved them back to their home country. Nobody knows what they are up to, but we are aware of the massive asset stripping, which may be the reason they are fleeing, especially now that the country’s Supreme Court still stands on its judgment, which is in favour of the BFIGroup”, the union leader told Nigerian Pilot.
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