The Nigerian Shippers’ Council (NSC) has expressed concern over the vandalism and theft of railway tracks connecting inland ports across the country.
Pius Akutah, executive secretary of NSC, raised the concern recently while inspecting the Funtua Inland Dry Port in Katsina State ahead of its inauguration.
According to him, the incessant cases of stealing the national assets along Lagos-Kaduna, Kaduna-Zaria, Zaria-Funtua, and Kano have stalled the commencement of train transport of cargo from and to the hinterland ports.
Although the Funtua Inland Dry Port has commenced informal commercial conveyance of freight through heavy trucks on the road, however, the use of the train system is considered pivotal to cost-effectiveness, less risk, and overall management of the dry port.
Akutah said that the Federal Government is harnessing energy to overcome the challenges and ensure the railway system is connected to the inland dry ports.
He called for an end to needless obstruction of government investment.
Akutah however challenged the Katsina State Government and locals around the railway line to take ownership of the critical national assets, adding that the Federal Government alone should not be responsible for protecting the entire facility within the states.