Abiola Seun. |.
President Muhammadu Buhari has said that Kano – Maradi rail, when completed, will significantly enhance the movement of passengers and freight to the hinterland, especially raw materials from both agricultural and mineral resources for industries.
Buhari who stated this on Tuesday at the ground-breaking ceremony of Kano-Katsina-Jibiya-Maradi (Niger Republic) rail, directed the Ministries of Transportation and Finance to conclude financial arrangements with appropriate co-financiers that will partner with the Federal Government for construction of West-East Coastal rail line from Lagos to Calabar, linking some major cities in South East and South-South.
The president, according to the News Agency of Nigeria(NAN) said the West-East Coastal rail line would connect Onitsha, Benin, Warri, Yenegoa, Port Harcourt, Aba and Uyo.
On the Kano – Jibiya – Maradi rail line, Buhari noted that the cities of Jibiya and Maradi constitute a significant trading core between Nigeria and Niger Republic – a tradition dating back many centuries.
According to him, this vital infrastructure line will establish an end-to-end logistic supply chain in railway transport services between Northern and Southern regions of the country, reaching Nigerian southern ports of Lagos and Warri.
“The entire route encompasses territory inhabited by close to 80 million people across 10 states of the country.
“The rail line traverses the major commercial and administrative centre of Kano and passing through other economic hubs of the country including Kazaure, Daura, Katsina and up to the border town of Jibiya and the Niger Republic city of Maradi, “ the President stated.
Buhari commended the construction company handling the project, Messrs Mota-Engil Nigeria Limited, for supporting knowledge and technology transfer by investing in the establishment of an Institution for Transportation and Railway Science.
“On the Eastern corridor of the country, the Port Harcourt – Enugu – Makurdi – Maiduguri rail line with branches to Owerri, Imo State and Damaturu, Yobe, have been awarded for reconstruction to include a deep seaport in Bonny Island and a Railway Industrial Park in Port Harcourt with the objectives of achieving a vibrant and functional railway.”
In his remarks, Gov. Aminu Masari of Katsina State appreciated the President for bringing the life-long dream of the state to reality with inclusion on the Kano-Maradi rail line.
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