The Federal Government has approved the $5.3bn Ibadan to Kano standard gauge rail project. This was disclosed onThursday in Lagos during the 3rd Maritime Stakeholders Interactive Forum, the Honourable Minister of Transportation, Rt. Hon. Rotimi Amaechi revealed that the Honourable Minister of Transportation for State, Gbemisola Saraki will personally be in charge of all maritime agencies while he will be focusing on the Railway sector.
According to the Honourable Minister of Transportation, “In my first term as Minister, I completely abandoned the maritime sector to the Heads of agencies. This time around, that won’t be happening again as I have instructed that the Honourable Minister of Transportation for State should personally supervise the maritime agencies, while I just oversight what is happening.“There are two things I discussed with Mr President that I will be focusing on in this second term as Minister, and they are maritime security and the Single Window project. I have assured the government that by the end of 2020, we should have the Single Window at our maritime sector.
“Just yesterday, we got approval to complete the $5.3bn Ibadan to Kano rail project. We have also applied for funding to commence coastal rail for the Port-Harcourt to Warri segment.“On maritime security, I have told the Israeli firm, HSLI that they are too slow. By now, they should have launched. I want to know the situation of things with the aspect of security on our maritime space.”he added.
The Ibadan-Kano standard gauge railway estimated to cost $8billion, On the rail project: Basically, the rail line, which is a part of the Lagos to Kano double rail project will pass through several states including Osun, Ekiti, Ondo, Kwara and Niger states before it gets to Kaduna and then Kano.
According to Amaechi as earlier disclosed, the rail will cost about $8 billion and must link Lagos ports down to Kano to maximize the economic benefits on that rail corridor as the value is in the freight, not passengers.