The Senate on Thursday passed the Ajaokuta Steel Company Completion Fund Bill 2018 which the enactment into law will enable government to disburse adequate funds for the completion of the multi-billion Naira steel company.
The passage of the Bill was consequent upon the adoption of the motion on the Bill presented by the Senate Leader, Senator Ahmad Lawan.
The Deputy Senate President, Senator Ike Ekweremadu, who presided over the plenary expressed optimism that the Bill if signed into law by President Buhari would go a long way in fast-tracking the completion of the moribund project.
The Bill in its Article 2 provided that the sum of $1 billion from the Federal Government’s share in the excess crude earnings should be committed to the completion of the steel company.
While also providing that that all monies that may from time to time be appropriated and authorised by any tier of government should be part of the funding for the completion of the company, the \ Bill provided further that all loans or grants from time to time made to the country for the purpose of completing the Ajaokuta Steel Company should be accommodated.
This is even as the Bill provided that the monies in the Fund shall be applied by the Minister subject to Appropriation by the National Assembly only for the purpose of the construction, improvement, extension, enlargement and replacement of infrastructure and works, including the provision, acquisition, improvement and replacement of other capital assets required in respect of or in connection with the completion of the Ajaokuta Steel Company project.
According to the proposed legislation, the loans can be used for the acquisition of land and of any right or interest in or over land and in respect of the use of any invention, including the carrying on of any survey, research or investigation preparatory to the undertaking of any such purpose or the formation of any plan or scheme for the development, improvement of Ajaokuta Steel Company project.