February 22, 2024

Senate to investigate cement coys on hike in price

Senate to investigate cement coys on hike in price

The Senate has resolved to investigate the sudden hike in the price of cement by its producers in Nigeria.

This followed the adoption of a point of order by the Deputy Senate Leader, Sen. Lola Ashiru, on the “Need to Urgently Address the Increase in Cement Price and other Building Materials in Nigeria” at plenary on Wednesday.

Presenting the order, Ashiru urged the Senate to mandate its Committee on Industries to conduct an investigation into the activities of cement manufacturing industries operating in Nigeria.

This, he said, was with a view to ascertaining the reasons behind the price hike.

He also urged the Senate to mandate the Committee on Industries to ensure that cement manufacturing companies adhered strictly to fair market practice and desist from anti-competitive practices.

Ashiru said that the construction industry was vital to infrastructure development, adding that the building industry heavily depended on cement and other building materials for its sustenance.

He said that the trend of a daily increase in the price of the product had hampered progress in various developmental endeavours across the country.

”This is because key building materials, particularly cement and iron rod, are now sold at prohibitive rates, with cement and iron rod recently rising from N5,500 per bag in January 2024 to about N14,000 and N8,500 to N17,000 respectively,” he said.

He also said that the sudden price increase has had a detrimental impact on critical infrastructure and housing in the country.

Ashiru said that the raw materials for cement were being sourced 100 per cent locally and not imported, making the sudden surge in price suspicious and perplexing.

“Cognisant that affordable cement and other building materials are indispensable to national development, addressing the issue in time will be advantageous to the construction industry.

“This is because it will ensure the progress of constituency projects, strengthen national security by providing jobs and stability, and improve the livelihood of Nigerians generally,” he said.