Insecurity slows down Kano-Kaduna rail project to 22.6% - Contractor - Newstrends
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Insecurity slows down Kano-Kaduna rail project to 22.6% – Contractor



Insecurity slows down Kano-Kaduna rail project to 22.6% – Contractor


Insecurity is slowing down the construction work on the Kano-Kaduna standard gauge rail project, contractor handling the job has lamented.

Indeed, it said only 22.6 per cent of the work had so far been accomplished.

The China Civil Engineering Construction Company (CCECC) awarded the project in 2021 disclosed this during an inspection of the work by the Minister of Transportation, Senator Sa’idu Ahmed Alkali.

Alkali was on construction site in the Makarfi Local Government Area of Kaduna State on Saturday.

The rail project involves a 203-kilometre double-track standard gauge railway from Kano to Kano with an estimated sum of $1.2 billion.

Nigeria’s Senate has approved China Development Bank as new financier for the Kaduna-to-Kano rail project at a cost of $973 million, after another Chinese lender withdrew from the project in 2020.

The CCECC while lamenting security challenge in the area sought collaboration with the military, recalling that two months ago, two of their personnel were kidnapped along Tashar Yari in the Makarfi LGA of Kaduna State.

Minister Alkali asked the contractors to review the metal clips they are using to hold the rail track.

He said doing so would help prevent the rail from being stolen or destroyed by vandals and thieves.

He said, “We came to see by ourselves, you know seeing is believing. We are able to appraise the performance of the contractors of Kano-Kaduna rail project.

“You can see as we stand here, we started raining some little observations in the clips they are using. We asked them to use anti-theft clips so that they cannot be easily removed.

“Although this project has security challenge, Nigerians should expect us to deliver in the shortest possible time,” he explained.


CCECC promises to deliver Abuja light train in eight months – Shettima



CCECC promises to deliver Abuja light train in eight months – Shettima

Abuja light rail project will be ready in the next eight months, contractor handling the project, China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation, has promised.

Vice-President Kashim Shettima got the commitment from the company during a meeting with the CCECC Chairman, Mr Jason Zhang, in Abuja.

Senior Special Assistant to the VP on Media and Communications, Stanley Nkwocha, disclosed this on Wednesday, in a statement titled, ‘CCECC commits to delivering Abuja Light Rail project in 8 months.’

Nkwocha said, “Vice President Kashim Shettima extracted this commitment from the management of CCECC when its Chairman, Mr Jason Zhang, led some members of his management team on a courtesy call at the Presidential Villa.”

Shettima described CCECC as part of Nigeria’s history, saying the Chinese construction giant has played a pivotal role in developing Nigeria’s landmark projects, adding that their commitment to the development of Nigeria and Africa is commendable.

He said, “You have been in this country for 42 years. We have to commend you for all the beautiful initiatives and support over the years.

“We share a lot in common with the people of China, just as you have been with us through thick and thin.

“You have the financial firepower and the willingness to support Nigeria and other African countries without interfering in our local politics. This we appreciate a lot.”

He assured the corporation that the Bola Tinubu administration would sustain the existing relationship with the company and the people of China.

He said the Abuja rail project, like others, remains dear to the President and Nigerians.

Speaking earlier, the Managing Director of CCECC, David Waig, reiterated the company’s commitment towards delivering the project within the stipulated period.

According to him, the CCECC will go above board and leave no stone unturned in ensuring the delivery of the Abuja light rail line come May 2024.

However, he called on the Federal Capital Territory Administration to engage an operational company that would quickly see the smooth takeoff of the rail project.

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Rail development: FG to explore bilateral, multilateral agreements, says minister



Rail development: FG to explore bilateral, multilateral agreements, says minister

Minister of Transportation, Senator Saidu Alkali, says the Federal Government will take advantage of the numerous bilateral and multilateral agreements between Nigeria and other countries on trade, commerce and technology transfer to facilitate the ongoing development of the nation’s rail transport sector.

He also assured workers of the Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC) that better allowances are in the offing for them to enhance their welfare and productivity.

He spoke in Wednesday during his visit to the NRC headquarters at Ebute-Meta, Lagos.

He promised the NRC management of his ministry’s support towards realising its statutory functions.

The minister said that transportation constitutes a major organ in promoting economic growth across countries world over.

“The visit is to evaluate the existing rail infrastructure and ongoing projects with particular reference to Lagos-Ibadan and Kano-Maradi railway modernisation project.

”The familiarisation tour of railway facilities and projects within Lagos was interesting, despite a number of discoveries that required urgent executive action,” Alkali said.

He promised to reach out to the Comptroller-General of the Nigeria Customs Service, Mr Wale Adeniyi, to facilitate the removal of the customs building at APM Terminal blocking a rail track.

Alkali said that there was the need to look for a lasting solution to the delay in the removal of the building, which had prevented the completion of the two standard gauge lines.

He said the ministry was working towards fixing the single track carrying containers from Lagos to Kano within three months.

The minister added that the ministry was also working toward expansion of the operational scope of Kajola Rail Wagon Assembly Plant.

He commended the China Civil Engineering Construction Company (CCECC) for establishing the plant at Kajola as their Corporate Social Responsibility.

Alkali said that the ministry would ensure completion of Bola Tinubu Station of the standard gauge rail within three weeks.

He requested the Managing Director of NRC Property Ltd., Mr Timothy Zalanga, to provide comprehensive data of the corporation’s real estate.

The Managing Director, NRC, Mr Fidet Okhiria, congratulated the minister on his appointment.

According to the NRC MD, the railway is the bedrock of economic growth and development of the country, through mass movement of freights and people.

He said that railway contributes to urbanisation, business expansion and social integration for peaceful coexistence.

Okhiria said the NRC had faced challenges, including security threats and vandalism of critical infrastructure.

He said, “We must commend the effort of various security agencies for securing the NRC facilities for safety of our valued passengers and other stakeholders by arresting and prosecuting offenders.

“I will also commend the effort of the minister for the visit to Idu Railway Station Abuja, which in fact, and in all honesty, has spurred us to be more proactive.

”The visit has shown the minister’s commitment to safe, clean, effective and comfortable train service to Nigeria people.”

He pleaded with the minister to use his legislative experience to achieve his mandate of railway modernisation projects.

Okhiria said that the laying of standard gauge tracks from Kaduna to Kano was in progress, while the next stage would be from Kano to Maradi.

He also commended the efforts of the minister on the commencement of freight containers haulage from Apapa ports to Kano.

The President, Union of NRC workers, Mr Innocent Ajiji, pledged to support the new minister for having them in mind to upscale the welfare of the staff. (NAN)

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FG moves to decongest Apapa port as minister inaugurates Lagos-Ibadan freight train



FG moves to decongest Apapa port as minister inaugurates Lagos-Ibadan freight train

Minister of Transportation Ahmed Alkali on Tuesday inaugurated freight train for the movement of containers from the Apapa Port, Lagos, to the container deport in Ibadan, Oyo State.
The move is expected to decongest the Apapa Port as well as free some Lagos major bridges currently littered with container trucks, causing heavy traffic.
This is coming barely three weeks after Alkali was sworn in as minister along with other members of President Bola Tinubu’s cabinet.
The freight train movement is being undertaken by Buen Logistics Limited, starting with three trains per day.
Inaugurating the freight train open at the APM terminal, the minister expressed delight at the project.
He also spoke on the Nigeria Customs Service scanner house blocking the rail track at the Apapa Port.
“We are using one line now but we have two others that stop before the Customs (scanner) building.
“The ministry is going to liaise with the Customs to remove their building and free the remaining two lines up to the end of the seaport and even enable the train to turn.”

Managing Director of the Nigerian Railway Corporation, Fidet Okhiria, said 30 wagons would be moved by a train on each line per day.

“The facility can move four trains but we are starting with three per day.”

Executive Director, Buen Logistics Limited, Mazi Jetson Nwankwo, said the freight train initiative would address simultaneously the port congestion and trailers parking on major roads and bridges.

He also said the train would return the empty containers dropped at the container terminal to the seaport.

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