FG expresses displeasure over slow pace of work on Lagos–Ibadan rail project

THE Federal Government has attributed the delay in the completion of the Lagos-Ibadan railway project to inadequate deployment of manpower and construction equipment by the contractor, China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation (CCECC).

Speaking at an emergency inspection of the project at Ebute Meta, Lagos, the Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, who was accompanied by the chairman of CCECC, Zhoa Dianlong,  called on CCECC to deploy more manpower and equipment commensurate with the volume of work on the ground.

He expressed displeasure over the slow pace of work, especially on Ebute-Metta to Apapa seaport corridor.

Amaechi, however, observed that there had been significant improvement “between the last time we came for inspection and now.”

The minister had on many occasions asked the company to bring in more manpower and equipment to ensure timely completion of the Lagos-Ibadan rail project so as to move to the second phase of the project, which is Ibadan-Kano rail corridor.

He noted that CCECC leadership had given him assurance that from next week, work would be intensified at the seaport corridor.

Amaechi said, “I will request from the chairman that equipment must be commensurate to the volume of work that we have,” adding that the company should be able to deliver on the project in the next three years.

Also speaking during the inspection, the managing director, Nigeria Railway Corporation (NRC), Fidet Okhiria, said that the inability of vessels to carry  equipment for the ongoing project had been resolved and that the recurring cases of vandalism which posed a threat to the project had all been addressed.

Responding to the minister’s observation, the CCECC chairman said most materials could not be sourced locally and vessels shipping them to Nigeria take time to arrive and when they do, they cannot berth at the seaport because of the long queue.

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