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FG Flags off Lagos-Kano Freight operations

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The Minister of Transportation, Senator Said Alkali, has registered President Tinubu led administration’s commitment to prioritize and reap the economic benefits of inland Dry port projects across Nigeria.

The Minister gave the assurance on Thursday in Kano, Kano State, during the official flag-off of freight operations at Dala inland Dry port, adding that the freight would serve as an enabler for economic growth.

According to the Minister: ” the Federal Government took the bold step to prioritize this project owing to the key roles the transportation sector plays in National economic growth.

“It is in furtherance to this cause that I, commissioned the Lagos /Ibadan standard gauge to decongest the port and promote efficient services during my familiarization visits on assumption of office in October 2023,” said the Minister.

“It was during that tour that I issued a deadline to the Nigeria Railway Corporation (NRC)to fix the narrow gauge from Lagos to Kano freight into use. It is important to put on record that the freight operations from Lagos to Kano, would restore the economic viability of the city as the commercial nerve of Nigeria”.

Senator Alkali further said, construction work to link the current narrow gauge of Lagos to Kano and Kano which the freight services would be running to Maradi standard gauge is progressively ongoing at an appreciable speed.

“As a testimony to this reality, the Federal Government has recently secured financing for the completion of the Kaduna/ Kano standard gauge ongoing project.

He also revealed that the federal government has also initiated the construction of the rail lines from Badagry to Tincan Island and Papa. It will also lead to Lekki, to Ijebu- Ode to Kajola. The line will also connect Lagos and terminate at Maradi.”

According to Sen Alkali, “It is worth mentioning that the project being commissioned as well as other several ones were taken under the Federal Government railway modernization programme to accelerate the renewed hope agenda of Tinubu administration”.

Commending the Tinubu administration’s outstanding efforts in providing resources for the projects, the minister called on Nigerians to take advantage of the facilities to improve their lives, and propel the nation for economic growth.

The Governor of Kano State, Abba Kabiru Yusuf, who was represented by his Deputy Abdulsalami Abdusamad, in his remarks said that the project would provided the needed avenue for direct importation, exportation of goods to Kano without hitch.

He also said, the project will boost the economy of the state to continue playing its leadership role in commercial activities across the Sahara.

“This project I so much believe, is key to us. Says are gone when people go to Lagos to claim their goods, Port Harcourt or Calabar. It has come when the government of Kano state, is about to join Lagos state in enacting policy on transportation to enable us to diversify the economic potentials of the state by tapping the enormous benefits in the sector”

Earlier, the Managing Director of the Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC), Engineer Fidget Ohiria, disclosed that the narrow gauge takes three to four days, to move cargo from Lagos to Kano, stressing that the essence is to keep the tracks busy and discourage vandalism on the infrastructure.

“The NRC is ready for this operation and we have mobilized our men to be on duty. We have our team of security men to avoid stealing people’s goods”. He said.

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