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Amaechi says negotiation ongoing for Port Harcourt- Maiduguri rail project

The Nigerian Government and the Chinese government has began negotiations on the construction of the Port Harcourt – Maiduguri rail project, the Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi has revealed.

Amaechi stated that the six geopolitical zones of the country are being covered in the rail project.

He assured that the Federal Government will continue its negotiations with the Russians for the commencement of the Lagos-Calabar rail project.

Amaechi in a statement made available by the ministry on Thursday said:”The six geo-political zones are all covered, Port Harcourt –Maiduguri covered Port Harcourt, Aba, Owerri, Umuahia, Enugu, Abakaliki, Awka, Markurdi, Lafia, Akwanga Jos, Bauchi Gombe and connects to Yobe Damaturu and then Maiduguri.

“The Lagos Calabar is the whole of the South-South. We have Lagos coming through Akure, Benin and then from Benin and we have a spot leading to Agbor and Asaba and then to Onitsha and then you continue to Benin to Ughelii, Warri, Yenagoa, Port Harcourt, Aba, Uyo and Calabar that takes care of the South-South while Port Harcourt – Maiduguri takes care of the South East and the North East.

“The Lagos Kano also takes care of South West and part of the North West, and North Central. The central line that starts from Abuja also takes care of the North Central, Kogi, and also takes care of kwara and all of these requires money”, he said.

Amaechi explained that the construction of the rail lines across the country required huge capital.

He said ‘’If we can’t get money enough for the new once we can as well borrow money to rehabilitate the old ones.

Currently what we n ow have as functional lines, Lagos-Ibadan 156km, Abuja-Kaduna 186km and Itakpe-Warri which is about 350km all put together Under this Government we have recorded a total about 600+km of railway and by the time we complete Ibadan-kano which is about 860km, we will be having 1500+km railway constructed by this Government

“I hope that the next government that will take over from us will be able to do something in that regard to progress the railway, because even if we finish Lagos-Kano, we still need to finish Lagos-Calabar and Port Harcourt –Maduguri,” he added.

 

Stella Enenche, Abuja

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