The Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC) will commence transportation of materials for the Ajaokuta-Kaduna-Kano (AKK) gas project being promoted by the Nigerian Gas Company Limited through Warri-Itapke rail line.
Minister of transportation, Rotimi Amaechi disclosing this on his twitter handle @ChibuikeAmaechi, said the flag-off of commercial freight services on the Warri-Itakpe rail line will greatly boost the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and enhance the socio-economic development of communities along the route.
Amaechi noted that the project, which was in partnership with the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), is for the benefit of these communities and Nigeria generally, irrespective of political affiliation.
According to him, “Already, patronage is up by over 200 percent in the last few months and is becoming a preferred means of transportation for travellers between Abuja, Kogi, Edo and Delta States. We want to extend this rail line to the Federal Capital Territory (FCT),” Amaechi said in the tweet.
Report indicates that the official flag-off or commercial freight services saw the commencement of 96-line pipe haulage between Ijevwu Rail Station in Warri to Itakpe Station in Kogi State or the national central line. The line-pipes belong to the Ajaokuta-Kaduna-Kano (AKK) gas project.
At the flag-off, Ifeanyi Okowo, Governor of Delta State, promised that the rail infrastructure in the state will be protected. He described it as a new beginning for rail transportation in Nigeria.
He assured that the host communities in Delta State have accepted the facilities and will guard it jealously.
Recall that President Muhammadu Buhari commissioned the 326 kilometre-Itakpe-Ajaokuta-Warri rail line on 29th September 2020, for commercial operations, 30 years after the project was conceived.
Although, passenger services commenced immediately, the freight service didn’t commence at the time.