…urges President Tinubu to intervene immediately
Ben Peters, Abuja
Following the recent increase in price of cement ,the President of Real Estate Developer’s Association of Nigeria (REDAN), Dr. Aliyu Oroji Wamakko has called on President Bola Tinubu to urgently invite cement manufacturers for discussion to forestall further hardship on Nigerians.
Dr. Wamakko stated that there were already economy hardship in the country and that cement manufacturers to review upward cement prices in early January doesn’t tell well for Nigerians and real Estate Developer’s.
He noted, “The price of ready-mix concrete will also be increased while the cost of in-situ production of concrete will rise significantly. Such an increment, if allowed to take place, will worsen the economic situation of the nation.
“When there is construction, there is a multiple employment and it helps to reduce the poverty index of the country. But remember, because of no employment…the resultant effect is banditry, kidnapping, armed robbery.
“The federal government should also remember that we have 28 million housing deficit in Nigeria.
“Cement is an essential ingredient in the production of buildings. Frequency in the increase of its price has negatively impacted the nation’s housing sector. Experience has shown that high prices of cement tend to encourage a reduction in the quality of building production.
The Cement Producers Association of Nigeria had earlier warned that the plan by the Federal Government to introduce concrete roads would raise the price of cement to N9,000 per bag from the current price of N5,000, Dr. Wammako therefore urged the federal government to discourage the idea.
Dr. Wamakko who is also the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Jedo investment Limited called on the government to permanently address the perennial cement price hike by facilitating larger participation in the cement industry, noting that Nigerians had no business buying cement for more than N5,600 per bag.
The REDAN President said the President should investigate why the current price of a 50kg bag of cement was N5,700 despite a cement manufacturer recently promising a price of N3,500 for the product.
He said any further increase in the price of cement would be a direct threat to the ‘Renewed Hope’ housing programme of the Federal Government.
“You see, Cement is a major component in building construction, serving as a binder substance, hardens and adheres to other materials to bind them together.
“The Chairman of BUA Group, Abdulsamad Rabiu, had last year announced the intention of his brand to crash cement prices from over N5,000 per bag to N3,500 beginning from January this year. But the price has remained unchanged.
Major retailers have kept on with the old prices ranging from N5, 500 to almost 8,000 in major locations even as distributors claim to have old stocks or logistics costs pushing prices up.