Delta Steel new owners deny asset stripping allegation
Premium Steel and Mines Limited (PSML), the new owners of Delta Steel Company (DSC), Ovwian-Aladja in Delta State, has debunked reports that it was selling off original plant components and properties of DSC.
Some youths of the host community had accused PSML of lacking long-term development plan for the company and selling vital assets of old DSC instead of repairing them.
The act, the youths alleged, was in preparation for eventual exit.
But the management of the PSML, which acquired DSC in 2015, claimed it had made enormous financial commitment towards revamping the plant and to transform it into a reputable steel hub in Africa.
The Deputy General Manager, Corporate Affairs, Emmanuel Etaghene, said the allegations of asset stripping were baseless and illogical against the huge financial commitment already made by his company to resuscitate the plant.
According to Etaghene, serious renovation works are ongoing both at the production plant and the complex, and the company has also purchased trucks, buses and generating plants for the staff hospital, as well as primary and technical schools.
He disclosed that PSML had received three shiploads of pellets worth N10 billion to ensure that the plant remained functional.
Etaghene, who spoke at a briefing attended by top management of PSML, including the General Manager and Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Mr. Prasanta Mishra, and General Manager, Mechanical, Samuel Tanno, said after resuscitation, the plant with 500 staff presently would employ about 3,000 workers.
He told reporters that “the falsehood being spread about the company” was unfair, as PSML had invested huge sums and had replaced obsolete equipment with modern technology that would ensure that the plant met the expectations of government and stakeholders.”
The DGM agreed that PSML sold off some unusable generating plants, trucks and other items, which had been moribund for over 20 years and not useful to the plant.
“If a company owned a property and it is doing systematic replacement and someone is accusing it of stripping asset, it is not right. Asset is an item that is available for use. If something is no longer useful, I don’t know if we can call it asset.”
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