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Buhari commissions Jonathan’s Abuja-Kaduna rail gauge

About seven years after its commencement, the first phase of the Abuja-Kaduna Standards Rail Gauge was commissioned by President Muhammadu Buhari, with a pledge to ensuring that the country has a working rail system.

Towards this end, his administration would pursue a 25-Year Strategic Railway Master Plan which is aimed at rehabilitating the existing 3,505km narrow gauge rail line as well as constructing new standard gauge rail lines across the country.

Though conceptualised by the administration of Chief Olusegun Obasanjo in 2006, the actual execution of the project started in 2009 under the regime of the administration of Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan. Buhari said the completion and commissioning of the project marked a major milestone in the annals of the country.

According to Buhari, “The construction of the Abuja-Kaduna Standard Gauge rail track commenced in 2009 and happily, seven years after, we are on the threshold of presenting to Nigerians a Standard Gauge Railway Train Service that will be safe, fast and reliable.

“The train service will provide the much needed alternative transport link between the Federal Capital Territory and Kaduna State, a corridor which has a huge potential for industries, agricultural activities, and a growing labour force.

“This project was conceived by a previous administration, started by the last government and I am pleased to complete and commission it.”

The President recalled that between 1963 and early 1980s, Nigeria had a vibrant rail system which conveyed agricultural, livestock and solid mineral resources to Lagos and Port Harcourt sea ports from where they were exported.

“It is our vision and hope that those good old days will soon be back with us and indeed in a more prosperous way with the restoration of rail transport system which today’s occasion,” he said.

He commended the Minister of Transportation Rotimi Chibuike Amaechi and his team to have put great efforts in the last few months towards ensuring the successful completion of this project under the present administration.

Buhari noted that the commissioning of the project was in line with the vision of bringing about the desired change to make life easier for the generality of Nigerians through the development and provision of the necessary social and physical infrastructure.

“In this regard, I wish to assure Nigerians that most State capitals and major commercial and production centres will be linked with railway system as a way of bringing about rapid socio-economic development and improving the quality of life of the Nigerians and promoting social and regional integration.

“Furthermore, I wish to also reassure Nigerians that due attention will be placed on pursuing the 25-Year Strategic Railway Master Plan which is aimed at rehabilitating the existing 3,505km narrow gauge rail line and developing and constructing new standard gauge rail lines across the country.

“As we celebrate the symbolic return of rail service today I wish to reiterate the commitment of this Administration to pursue with greater vigour and determination rehabilitation and construction of other rail lines including the major Lagos-Calabar and Kano-Lagos lines.

“As we get down to work, I look forward to flagging off many more lines outlined in our transport policy programme.” Buhari said.

 

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About Charles Igbinidu

Charles Igbinidu is a Public Relations practitioner in Lagos, Nigeria

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7 comments

  1. Idemudia Osahon

    Jonathan the Northern President! We no see this for South South ooo lol

  2. And what is Amaechi excited about?

  3. For the first time,let it look like something is happening

  4. It’s no Jonathan rail line, a project executed with public funds cannot become an individual project? Besides, the project was commenced by the Obasanjo administration, executed 90percent by the GEJ administration and completed by the incumbent govt, what has happened is the hallmark of continuity in governance, if we remain on this path, problem of abandoned projects that have dotted our landscape before now ‘ll be a thing of the past.

    • I don’t think anyone here is suggesting that in any way Jonathan appropriated the line. In this climes, we tend to associate projects with the regime we remember for putting it in our consciousness. This is without prejudice to those who tend to name projects after themselves. Finally, I live in kaduna, for anyone who plys the kaduna, Abuja, via the new bwari expressway, would know this project was commenced and completed by the last regime and was actually put to use. I don’t know where their 10% came from. The only percentages I remember, is the 97 and 5% so well parroted by you know who!

      • Sf Ifeanyi Ahamba

        In that case, I want to assume time couldn’t permit the last administration to commission it… is that correct? ….. @ Moses Ideho
        Like · Reply ·

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