By Nora Agbakhamen
Chairman of the Northern Governors Forum and Governor of Plateau State, Simon Bako Lalong has commended President Muhammadu Buhari for his determination to transform the economy of the country through the entrenchment of rail transportation as a major means of moving people and goods.
“The Kaduna-Kano segment of the railway line is crucial to the development of Nigeria and particularly the Northern Region which has a lot of economic activities and a large population,” Governor Lalong said, was speaking on behalf of his colleagues in Kano, during the groundbreaking ceremony for the construction of the third segment of Lagos-Kano railway modernisation project performed by President Buhari.
He added that, “the vision of reconnecting all parts of the country by rail is a great legacy for the Buhari Administration which must be supported by all Nigerians. We want to assure Mr President of the support of all Northern Governors in the process of constructing, managing and safeguarding the rail infrastructure within the region,” he said.
In a speech, President Muhammadu Buhari expressed delight that the Kaduna-Kano leg of the railway modernisation project was taking off after the successful deployment of the Lagos-Ibadan and Abuja-Kaduna segments and other rail segments across the country.
“The Kano-Kaduna construction is part of the general plan to link the seaport with inland ports that will provide more opportunities for businessmen to import goods and receive them in the hinterland, thereby decongesting the ports and saving time and resources,” Buhari said.
Minister of Transport Rotimi Amaechi said the groundbreaking ceremony is a confirmation of the success story of the Buhari administration in reviving the railways and giving Nigerians a new lease of life.
Amaechi said, “the line will have one of the biggest stations in Nigeria which will serve passengers of the Kano-Maradi route”. He further noted that “over twenty thousand jobs will be created in the cause of the construction of the Kaduna-Kano rail line”.