The Lagos-Calabar coastal railway project with the China Civil Engineering Construction Company (CCECC) fresh mandate was signed by the Minister of Transportation, Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi on behalf of Federal Government on July 1, 2016 to commence construction at a cost of $11.117 billion. The contract was renegotiated and reviewed downward to $11.117 billion from the $11.917 billion it was initially valued at when it was initiated by the Goodluck Jonathan administration thereby saving a whooping $800million.
“What we have done today is signing same contract but different contract sum to make it legal”, he said.
The Lagos – Calabar Coastal Railway project will run through Calabar – Uyo – Aba – Port Harcourt – Yenogua – Otuoke – Ughelli – Warri – Sapele – Benin – Ore – Ijebu-Ode – Lagos with a target of covering all the Seaports along those Routes in good time.
The Minister further said part of the contract agreement with CCECC is to expedite action and conclude arrangement with the China-Exim Bank to facilitate the commencement of work on the Railway project noting that his desire and expectation is the completion of the project in two years.
On the funding of the project, the Minister assured that funding would not pose any hindrance to the smooth commencement and final completion of the Coastal Railway project.
“President Muhammadu Buhari has assured me that he is committed to the development of the Railway Sector in Nigeria and would not leave any ‘stone unturned’ to achieving that dream”, he said.
The railway will run through 10 states of the Southeast and the Southsouth’s Niger Delta, terminating at Calabar, the Cross River State capital. The trains for the route will travel at 120km/h and stop at 22 stations.
As a huge infrastructural development project, we believe it will enhance tourism and help increase the economic performance of the country.