By Emma Amaize
WARRI- THE Cement New Entrants Forum of Nigeria, CNEFN, has accused cement manufacturers of causing the recent increase in the price of cement in the country from N1, 600 to N2, 700.

Chairman of the CNEFN, Prince David Iweta in a letter, date May 9,  to President Goodluck Jonathan, entitled, “Request for audience to discuss the cement crisis in Nigeria and our pending request for one million tonnes per year cement import for five years”, said the cement manufacturers recommended increased duty and levy of 35 per cent to push landing cost of imported cement to N1,700 per bag, so as for local manufacturers to sell their locally manufactured cement at the same price of N1,700 as against N500 and N700 per bag, which is the expected price for locally manufactured cement”.

Prince Iweta, who is the chairman of Madewell Portland Cement, Sapele, Delta state, said that members of the CNEFN, notably himself, chairman of Reagan Portland Cement, Chief Reagan Ufomba, chairman of Magin Roi Portland Cement, Mr. Kola Sowande and chairman of Gateway Portland Cement, Chief Emmanuel Odegbami had sustained cement price stability at N1,600 per bag, from 2008 – 2010 before the present crisis.

He said those who planned the cement crisis were smiling to the bank with one of them declaring a three-month profit of N28 billion at the expense of innocent cement dealers and consumers.

The CNEFN boss was aghast as to why the aforementioned companies, which helped to stabilize cement price before now, were denied import permit after cancellation of the import permit granted them by the Federal Government in July 2008 under the regime of former President, the late Alhaji Umaru Yar’Adua,

The group urged President Jonathan to grant its members audience so as to be properly briefed on the problem at hand and how to resolve it.

Disclaimer

Comments expressed here do not reflect the opinions of vanguard newspapers or any employee thereof.