Nigeria Minister for Transporation – Mr. Rotimi Ameachi
Lagos Nigeria, Nigerian Minister for Transportation Mr. Rotimi Ameachi had announced that the contractor handling the new Lagos-Ibadan standard gauge rail, China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation, is expected to commence the laying of the track in December.
The new Lagos-Ibadan rail, spanning 156.65 kilometers, is a double line, which is the first phase of the 2,733km new Lagos-Kano rail line, expected to be linked with the Kaduna-Abuja standard gauge railway recently completed and now running. The rail line is expected to cost N458bn and is being jointly funded by the Nigerian and Chinese governments. While the Federal Government has paid N72bn as its counterpart funding for the project, the Export-Import Bank of China will commit $1.275bn (about N408bn) on behalf of China.
The rail line is expected to cost N458bn and is being jointly funded by the Nigerian and Chinese governments. While the Federal Government has paid N72bn as its counterpart funding for the project, the Export-Import Bank of China will commit $1.275bn (about N408bn) on behalf of China.
Speaking Immediately after the meeting with contractors, we’ll try to review the performance of contractors on a monthly basis so as ensure that we meet our target of laying this track by December 2018. “We are satisfied with the work done. Sand clearing has been done; we have started taking away the debris. Hopefully, by 2017 December, they will start laying tracks; we believe that if they maintain the current speed, we should be able to deliver by 2018. He warned the contractor against failing to deliver the project, said that there was no going back on the delivery deadline.
The minister also spoke on the Kaduna-Abuja rail line, saying President Muhammadu Buhari had given the go-ahead for the purchase of 17 locomotives for the rail line.
He said, “You know there is pressure on the Kaduna to Abuja rail line because there are more passengers than locomotives. There are two reasons for this, one is due to the state of the road from Kaduna to Abuja; secondly, the Abuja to Kaduna rail services is subsidized; so, more people are trooping in to enjoy the services at low costs.
“To address the pressure on the Abuja-Kaduna rail services, Mr. President has approved that we buy more locomotives and coaches. We have placed an order for 17 coaches. Two (locomotives) have already been retrieved. By December, 10 more will be received; and they will all be deployed in the Kaduna-Abuja rail services.”
In ensuring a smooth execution and timely delivery of the project the minister and his team would be undertaking a monthly inspection of the project.