The Nigerian Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, has said the Lagos-Ibadan rail line will be commissioned in June upon the approval of President Muhammadu Buhari.
Amaechi, who said this while on an inspection tour of the Lagos-Ibadan rail project, wondered how people could lose their moral values as to vandalise and steal Nigerians’ common heritage.
He said the project was 90 per cent ready for commissioning.
His words: “I hope the Office of the President will approve the commissioning of this project in June.
“We are not 100 percent ready for commissioning, but.. we are 89 to 90 per cent ready for commissioning.
“We hope, by the next three weeks, to be ready and by then, they will give us a date from the Office of the President. When they give us a date, we will be ready for commissioning.”
The Transport minister also mandated the management of the Nigerian Railway Corporation to go after buyers of vandalised rail tracks in the country.
Amaechi, who lamented the rampant vandalisation and theft of rail tracks across the country, said if there were no buyers for vandals, there won’t be much enthusiasm to “steal these critical national assets.”
According to him, “I don’t know why some Nigerians behave the way they do. I have told the Managing Director of NRC to arrest buyers of the equipment. It is not enough to arrest the vandals only.
“Also, we must approach the judiciary to have a court that can dispense justice readily so that people are sent to jail early enough to deter others, and we will also encourage our governors to create jobs.”
The minister also said an e-ticketing platform would be deployed to Lagos-Ibadan route to manage passenger traffic and curtail any issue of ticket racketeering.
“I have directed the Managing Director of NRC to advertise e-ticketing, and we hope the traffic that we will witness on this axis will be managed with that platform.”
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