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Federal Government approves $122.6m for Itapke-Ajaokuta rail link

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The Federal Executive Council has approved the contract for the repairs of the Itapke-Ajaokuta rail link, which service Nigeria’s iron ore mining area.

The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, who briefed State House correspondents after the FEC meeting presided over by the Acting President, Yemi Osinbajo on Wednesday, put the cost of the contract at  $122,616,582.

Mohammed said the cost was inclusive of all taxes at the prevailing Central Bank of Nigeria’s exchange rate of $1 to N305, adding that the contract, which spans 15 months, includes completion of 12 rail stations.

He further said the FEC also approved a ‘letter of comfort’ to GE for the concession of narrow gauge railway system as the government targets the haulage of one million tons of goods by rail this year.

Mohammed explained that the Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, approached the council seeking approval for a letter of comfort so that by October this year, the country would be able to begin the full utilisation of the Lagos-Kano narrow gauge, Calabar, Port Harcourt, Maiduguri line.

“This is part of the efforts to rehabilitate the 30,000km narrow gauge lines so that we can use it to start hauling goods and services which means that with effect from October this year, there will be new locomotives, about 17 wagons, that will be in use. This way, we will be able to remove at least a million tons of goods from our roads,” Mohammed said.

He said FEC also approved a memorandum on the revised estimate cost of construction of one 150MVA and 330nos 132KVA transformer at Birnin Kebbi, Kebbi State and the reinforcement of 330, 132KVA station in Kumbusto in Kano state for the Transmission Company Nigeria Limited. The contract was awarded in the sum of $49,845, and N43, 651, 964.

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