By Ismail Abdulaziz
Dangote Sugar Refinery PLC (DSR) has denied an online publication claiming the company’s involvement in price-fixing and not transparently engaged in any Backward Integration Programme as claimed.
“DSR wishes to vehemently refute the allegations and assertions in their entirety as the false allegations are geared at tarnishing the good name and brand of Dangote Sugar Refinery Plc and Dangote Industries Limited.
“DSR does not engage in artificial price manipulation of its products, either during the Holy month of Ramadan or at any other time. We have never ever increased price of our food items or commodities during the Holy month of Ramadan in the history of our operations” according to the Group Managing Director, Mr Ravindra Singhvi.
He also added that the Company is socially responsible and considers price-fixing to be unethical.
“Such allegation is highly mischievous and a calculated attempt to smear the reputation of DSR. DSR can only sadly conclude that the online publication is mischievous and geared at creating some form of undue advantage to some Industry players,” he said.
Singhvi said that the company began its Backward Integration Programme (BIP) with a 10-year sugar development plan, to produce 1.5 million MT per annum of sugar from locally grown sugarcane.
“The Project commenced with acquisition of large expanse of land in strategic locations such as Taraba, Adamawa and Nasarawa States. To this end, three BIP sugar companies; Dangote Taraba Sugar Limited, Dangote Adamawa Sugar Limited, Nasarawa Sugar Company Limited were incorporated.
“The Company had commenced rehabilitation and expansion of its Sugar Factory at Numan. Sugarcane planting has also commenced in the two other BIP locations.”
He said DSR has a responsibility to the Government, Nigerians and the Sugar Industry and other stakeholders to protect the integrity of the Sugar industry.
He gave the assurance that DSR would do all that is necessary to protect the integrity of the Sugar Industry, not engage in price fixing and to encourage healthy competition among the players.
He said that DSR had alerted the government of a practice that runs contrary to the Federal Government drive for self sufficiency in Sugar through a letter dated Jan. 28 for investigation.