The Federal Government has announced that the Abuja-Kaduna train services will resume operations in November this year and assured that necessary safety and security measures have been put in place to secure the lives of citizens.
The Minister of Transportation, Engr. Mu’azu Sambo disclosed this at the second edition of the President Muhammadu Buhari (PMB) administration’s scorecard series (2015 to 2023) organised by the Ministry of Culture yesterday (November 7, 2022) in Abuja.
Recall that rail services on the Abuja-Kaduna route were shut down following a terrorist attack on the train which resulted in the abduction of 168 passengers on March 28, 2022 and the killing of 8 others. After protracted negotiations and alleged secret ransom payments, the victims were released in batches, with the last batch released on October 5, 2022.
The government said it hoped to link every state capital across the nation by rail and assured that the litigation, which it inherited and had delayed dredging of the Calabar Port, is being resolved to pave the way for the dredging to begin.
“After necessary safety and security measures, the Abuja-Kaduna train service will resume this November.
“The government will kick-start the process leading to the construction of a rail line from Abuja to Itakpe, with a branch line to Baro.
“The Dala Inland Port in Kano State is about 70 per cent completed and has been linked to the rail lines. Other inland ports at various levels of completion are those in Isiala Ngwa (Abia), Erunmu (Oyo), Heipang (Plateau) and Maiduguri (Borno).
“The Kaduna Inland Dry Port (KIDP) was declared a port of origin of exports and destination of imports and commissioned by President Muhammadu Buhari on January 4, 2018. The Funtua Inland Dry Port is the next in line to be so declared this November.
“Since President Muhammadu Buhari commissioned the Deep Blue Project in June 2021, Nigeria has not recorded a single incident of piracy in its maritime domain.
“Within the period under review (2015-2023), moribund commercial railway services in Nigeria were resuscitated by the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari, while locomotives and coaches were procured and others refurbished.
“Work is ongoing at the Kajola (Ogun) Railway Wagon Assembly Plant.
“The Lekki Deep Sea Port is Nigeria’s largest seaport with a draught of 16.5m, whose development was started and completed by the President Muhammadu Buhari administration.
“The Buhari administration has approved the development of the Badagry Deep Sea Port which, upon completion, would have about 2.5km quay length container terminal, 0.5km quay length break bulk terminal, 360m quay length OSB terminal and a minimum of 18m draught. Also, it is expected to generate 250,000 direct jobs.
“In line with sub-regional resolutions aimed at facilitating trade and growth among member countries, the Ekok/Mfum Joint Border Post was commissioned only last week.
“Following a presidential directive, the inherited litigation delaying the dredging of the Calabar Port is being resolved to pave the way for the dredging to begin,” the minister explained, during the presentation of highlights.