Amaechi restates commitment to efficient transportation

The Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, has restated the ministry’s commitment to ensuring safe, efficient, affordable and seamless multimodal transport system in line with global best practices.

Amaechi expressed the commitment at the annual ministerial news briefing on landmark programmes, projects and activities of the ministry and its agencies on Friday in Abuja.

He said that in a bid to ensure safe, secure, reliable, efficient, affordable, intermodal and environmentally sustainable road transport for all, the ministry embarked on developing a National Road Transport Policy.

According to him, the policy is to address the challenges faced on the roads.

“The ongoing Road Transport Transformation Programme would have among its outputs Nationwide Urban Mass Transit, environmentally sustainable road transportation.

“And, the implementation of regional transport protocols to accelerate Nigeria benefiting from African Continental Free Trade Agreement and other detailed guides for the road transport subsector among other modes,’’ he said.

On the rail sub-sector, the minister noted that the Nigerian Railway Corporation was about 123 years old (1898-2021) and within this period has built 3,505km of narrow gauge rail lines.

Other lines built were 186km network of Standard Gauge (SG) rail lines linking Abuja to Rigasa in Kaduna State; 302km network of SG rail lines from Itakpe, Kogi, to Warri, Delta.

“And additional 185km double SG rail lines from Lagos to Ibadan Rail lines with extension to Apapa Sea Port nearing completion,’’ he said.

Amaechi further said that the ministry also planned to build other Standard Gauge Routes as follow –Ibadan to Kano; Kano to Kazaure – Daura – Kastsina– Jibiya to link Maradi in Niger Republic.

“Others are Port Harcourt – Aba – Enugu – Makurdi – Jos – Bauchi – Gombe – Maiduguri; starting with the Narrow – Gauge rehabilitation and the groundbreaking was recently conducted in Port Harcourt.

“Lagos-Ijebu-Ode –Benin –Yenegoa – PortHarcourt – Aba– Uyo – Calabar with feasibility study carried out waiting for funds,’’ he added.

The minister, therefore, called on collaboration among stakeholders, saying that it is pertinent to note that no nation has been able to grow to achieve its potentials without an efficient and effective transportation system in place.

“As a ministry, we recognise this sacred responsibility.

“The ministry and its agencies have, therefore, within budgetary limit created additional infrastructure to improve the intermodal transport system, create job opportunities and increase contribution to the nation’s GDP,’’ he said.

Similarly, the Minister of State for Transportation, Sen. Gbemisola Saraki, stated that the briefing was to create awareness of the ministry’s projects and activities as they contributed to the national development and growth of its citizens.

“Today’s briefing is an important part of reaching our goals, without the public awareness, our objectives will be more difficult to implement.

“We all know that transportation is the key to the social and economic development of any nation even more so in Nigeria.

“We, therefore, cannot overstate our responsibility within the ministry and its agencies to deliver an economically viable, sustainable and accessible transportation system to all Nigerians,’’ Saraki said.

Also speaking, the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, commended the achievements of the ministry, saying that it remained focused on delivering its projects.

“The Ministry of Transportation is one ministry that has been majoring its activities, especially in the area of railway transportation.

“It is through the Ministry of Transportation that we are very confident this administration will leave a massive legacy,’’ Mohammed said.

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