Senate Launches Inquiry into Skyrocketing Cement Prices

The Senate President, Godswill Akpabio has ordered its Committee on Industries to unravel the reasons behind the increase in the price of cement by producers of the commodity in Nigeria.

Akpabio made the call yesterday directing  the committee to find a possible solution to the high prices of cement and influence the manufacturing companies in the country to adhere to the regulations. The resolution was sequel to a motion sponsored by the senator representing Kwara South, Lola Ashiru, during the plenary. Mr Ashiru, a member of the All Progressives Congress (APC), complained that the price of cement increased drastically from N5,000 to N15,000 without proper regulations.

The senator emphasized that Nigerians find the current product price unbearable, especially given the high cost of living. He noted that the price hike has adversely impacted both private and government infrastructure projects. Ashiru voiced concern over numerous projects being abandoned due to the exorbitant cost of cement in the country. “Contractors are facing serious problems leading to stalling of projects which is threatening employment of the youths,” he said. The senator cautioned that without government intervention to regulate cement prices, youth unemployment rates and security challenges in the country would deteriorate further. High youth unemployment is linked to an increase in crimes,” he said.

Ashiru stated that regulating cement prices would bolster progress in constituency projects, enhance national security by creating jobs and stability, and improve the overall livelihood of Nigerians. He urged the Senate to address the matter, allowing cement manufacturing companies in Nigeria to adjust prices to be more affordable for Nigerians.

The motion garnered widespread support from the majority of senators during the debate, as evidenced by voice votes.

Following the discussion, the Senate President instructed the Senate Committee on Industries, led by Francis Fadahunsi, to investigate the matter and provide a report within two weeks. Meanwhile, the Minister of Works, David Umahi, and his counterpart in Trade and Investment, Doris Uzoka-Anite, held a meeting with cement manufacturers in the country to address the new cement price. Representatives from BUA Cement, Dangote Cement, Lafarge, and the Cement Producers Association attended the meeting. Additionally, the next day, the Minister of Housing and Urban Development, Ahmed Dangiwa, convened a meeting with Cement and Building Materials Manufacturers regarding the price issue.


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