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Wed, Sep 13, 2023 3:20 PM

Nigeria Begins Freight Services on Lagos-Ibadan Train after Two-Year Delay

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Nigeria Begins Freight Services on Lagos-Ibadan Train after Two-Year Delay
After a two-year delay, Nigeria has finally started the freight services on the long-awaited Lagos-Ibadan train line. The Minister of Transportation flagged off the cargo train, which will operate on a temporary single track until a customs scanner is removed. This development is expected to decongest the Apapa Port and ease transportation of goods across the country.

Nigeria has reached a significant milestone in its transportation sector with the commencement of freight services on the Lagos-Ibadan train line. After two years of delays, the much-anticipated cargo trains started operating from Apapa Port Complex to Moniya, Ibadan.

The Minister of Transportation, Senator Saidu Alkali, flagged off the freight train, which was loaded with 30 wagons (containers). The Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC) plans to lift three trains of 30 wagons daily to relieve congestion at the port.

The Lagos-Ibadan train line, spanning 157 kilometers with an extension to the Apapa Ports in Lagos, has faced several challenges that hindered its full utilization. One major obstacle was the presence of a radioactive scanner belonging to the Nigerian Customs Service (NCS) on the track's route to the Apapa Port. However, the NRC had to temporarily divert the track to allow operations while awaiting the removal of the scanner.

Finally, this hurdle was overcome as the Minister of Transportation flagged off the container movement facilitated by Buen Logistics at the APMT in Apapa. Although the freight train will currently operate on a single track, the ministry is working with the Customs to ensure the timely removal of the scanner.

"We have three trips for now, which amount to 90 containers," said Senator Saidu Alkali. "By the time we complete the three tracks, we will be having to decongest Apapa Port of 270 containers being moved per day, which is huge."

The NRC Managing Director, Engr. Fidet Okhiria, added that the introduction of the freight train would result in the daily lifting of 90 containers out of Apapa. "We are making a headway to ensure that the building gives way to have three lines that are expected at this terminal. In order not to wait eternally, we have done something to ensure that the tracks do not lay idle and we don't give room for vandalization," he stated.

This development is a significant boost to Nigeria's transportation sector, providing a much-needed solution to the congestion problems at the Apapa Port. With the removal of the fuel subsidy in the pipeline, the efficient movement of goods and passengers via the railway system will play a crucial role in reducing transportation costs and enhancing trade activities.

Furthermore, the operation of the Lagos-Ibadan train line's freight services will also help decongest the roads in Lagos, easing traffic and improving overall road safety. The success of this project demonstrates Nigeria's commitment to investing in its infrastructure and driving economic growth.

In conclusion, the commencement of freight services on the Lagos-Ibadan train line marks a significant milestone for Nigeria's transportation sector. It is a testament to the government's commitment to improving infrastructure and facilitating efficient movement of goods. As the freight services continue to expand, it is expected to decongest the Apapa Port and enhance trade activities across the country.

Source of content: OOO News 2023-09-13 News

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