The Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Transportation, Dr. Magdalene Ajani, has stated that the Ministry remains resolute and undeterred in Its vision to revolutionize the transport sector into a world class system.
The Permanent Secretary, who made this known today in Abuja at the 9th Nigeria Annual Transport Lecture tagged: “Nigeria Transportation for Development, Sectional Achievement, Prospects and Challenges”, said that is why the Federal Government has rigorously strived to rehabilitate the existing narrow gauge rail lines to Standard Gauge lines to provide connectivity between cities and West Africa.
“Similarly, the development of Deep Sea Ports and the automation of our ports operations to facilitate the ease of doing business at the ports are evident reality of the Ministry’s zeal for sectoral development” Ajani said are further attestation to the Ministry’s resolve.
Furthermore, she disclosed that to strengthen this position, the Transport Ministry concurrently has ongoing Public-Private engagement in the development of a world class transport system within the properties of the National Inland Waterways in Lagos State and encouraging other States to key into the drive.
The Permanent Secretary further stated that the current administration recognizes the importance of the transportation sector to the industrialization and diversification of the Nigerian Economy and is doing everything to ensure infrastructural development to drive the sector even as the Ministry is beleaguered by insufficient funding, minimal private sector participation and duplication of functions that tends to cause inter-agency conflicts.
Making her presentation, a one-time Director, Road Transport and Mass Transit Administration, Federal Ministry of Transportation, Anthonia Ekpa, decried neglect for the road sector by the Federal Government as against huge sums accorded other modal means of transport. She said that prioritizing the road sector is cheaper and would have more coverage on roads constructed and buses bought contrary to money spent to build just an airport runway or rail track.
She revealed that the United Nations records in 2018-2019 showed that people died mostly on roads and called all to advocate for development of the road sector.
In his speech earlier, the Director General, National Automotive Design and Development Council (NADDC), Jelani Aliyu, stated that the theme of this year’s lecture was aptly chosen in view of the fact that transportation is the backbone for economic development of any nation and a critical investment sector that stimulates economic growth.
He also stated that the theme is in line with the policies of the NADDC geared towards promoting and enhancing value addition in the transport and automotive sector of the economy by creating a conducive business climate to further enhance investment inflow and industrialization.
Towards the realization of the theme, Jelani stated that the agency is rapidly working towards developing and promoting advanced transport technology in the automotive industry in line with the global paradigm shift to a carbonless transport system.
“Currently, one of our top focus areas is scaling up production of applicable electric vehicles locally, to enable Nigeria meet its target for the Paris Accord and 2060 net zero commitment” Jelani stated.
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