ABUJA – (Federal Ministry of Transportation Report) – The Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi (Rt. Hon) has assured Nigerians, especially those from the South – East geo-political zone that every zone will benefit from the standard gauge being constructed by the Federal Government across the country.
Rotimi Ameachi gave the assurance in Abuja on Wednesday November 28, 2018 when he appeared before a Senate Joint Committee on Land Transportation, Local and Foreign Debts chaired by Gbenga Ashafa and co-chaired by Shehu Sani (Senators) to explain the allegation by South – East leaders that the region was excluded in the on-going revitalization of rail projects by the Federal Government.
The Minister further disclosed that what was actually stalling the projects was the non-approval of $30billion foreign loan by the National Assembly that was needed to construct the Standard Gauge Rail line from Port Harcourt to Maiduguri.
“We didn’t abandon any rail project. All the projects are there. The truth is that we can’t go to work without funds and that has to come when the Senate approves the $30billion loan request,’’ he said.
While responding to questions, the Minister disclosed that the general idea was that when all the rail projects are completed, the movement of cargos would be by rail, thereby reducing pressures on the roads. He later informed that the Itakpe to Ajaokuta to Warri rail line which was abandoned for 34 years has commenced free test- run services for the period of one month, beginning from Monday 25th November, 2018.