Amaechi mute on Lagos-Calabar rail, increases inspection on Lagos-Ibadan scheme
As the 2018 budget nears concluding stage, the Federal Government is yet to make any move to begin implementation of Lagos-Calabar rail development clearly captured in the budget.
It would be recalled that close to the final passage of the budget, the controversy ensued leading to the inclusion of the N700bn scheme which up till now, has not been mentioned by the Minister of Transportation, Mr. Rotimi Amaechi.
However, the Minister has continued to pay monthly visit to the Lagos-Ibadan railway project. In fact, he has given indication that the monthly visit will now become twice each month while activities on the eastern flank remained in the dark without any monthly visit by the Minister.
During the latest visit on Tuesday, Amaechi directed the Chinese Civil Engineering and Construction Company (CCECC), the contractors handling the Lagos-Ibadan railway to ensure that the train becomes operational before February 2019.
Speaking during the monthly inspection of the Lagos-Ibadan rail project in Papalando, Ogun State, he stressed that the contractors must also ensure that the tracks and bridges were completed and the train must make transport sense.
According to him, “There must be train on the tracks before February. It doesn’t matter when, but there must be a train on the track that makes transport sense.
“What I mean by transport sense is that, it must be able to carry passengers from Abeokuta if not up-to Ibadan, we have agreed that everybody must work towards it.
“The next inspection is on December 18 and that is two weeks from now.
“Before, we used to have it once in a month but now it will be twice in a month to ensure that, that is achieved.
“So, we will be back here to ensure that what we have agreed to today will be implemented. The work is progressing rapidly, the weather is no longer an issue, the elements were an issue before, but now it is no longer an issue.
“You should know that on the 18th, we would have started campaign, the president has emphasised that we must build infrastructure,” Amaechi noted.