PTAD Pays 603 Ex-Workers of ALSCON

January 6, 2021
ALSCON pensioners

By Modupe Gbadeyanka

No fewer than 600 former employees of the Aluminium Smelter Company of Nigeria (ALSCON) have been paid their entitlements by the federal government.

The beneficiaries, precisely 603, were paid by the Pension Transitional Arrangement Directorate (PTAD) in December 2020, according to a notice from the agency on Wednesday.

The 603 pensioners of the privatised company were given their money after undergoing the verification exercise put in place by PTAD.

“Following successful documentation, verification and validation of the ex-workers of ALSCON by PTAD, 603 Ex-workers of the privatized agency were paid in December 2020,” the statement obtained by Business Post said.

The Executive Secretary of PTAD, Ms Chioma Ejikeme, was quoted as saying that the beneficiaries were paid the remaining outstanding 85 per cent of their entitlement.

She re-assured pensioners that PTAD will continue with the payments of the inherited liabilities to support their well-being.

ALSCON is one of the largest Aluminium smelting companies in Africa located in Ikot-Abasi, Akwa-Ibom State. The plant has close proximity to neighbouring African countries around the Gulf of Guinea like Ghana, Togo, Benin, Cameroon, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon and Sao Tome.

It was designed to produce 193,000 tons of Aluminium annually at optimal capacity and generate more than $400 million annually for Nigeria.

However, the company struggled to contribute meaningfully to the economy of the nation and in in 2004, the Bureau of Public Enterprise (BPE) requested for interested buyers.

The sale of the firm to a Russian company, UC Rusal, for $250 million has continued to generate controversies because a Nigerian-American professional, Dr Reuben Jaja, who led an American firm, BFI Group, to buy ALSCON, offered $410 million and was declared the winner of the bidding process.

Mr Jaja took the matter to court to seek redress but lost at the high court. He later proceeded to the appeal court, where he against lost but reprieve came for him at the supreme court in 2012 when all the five justices of the apex court ruled in his favour.

In all of these, the former workers of the company were suffering because their entitlements were not paid by the federal government, which sold the firm to a private investor.

Modupe Gbadeyanka

Modupe Gbadeyanka is a fast-rising journalist with Business Post Nigeria. Her passion for journalism is amazing. She is willing to learn more with a view to becoming one of the best pen-pushers in Nigeria. Her role models are the duo of CNN's Richard Quest and Christiane Amanpour.

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