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Amaechi Urged Senates To Obtain U.S.$6.1 Billion Loan For Railway Projects

Amaechi Urged Senates To Obtain U.S.$6.1 Billion Loan For Railway Projects
Rotimi Amaechi, the Minister of transportation, speaks over the construction of railway project plans, heading from Lagos to Ibadan, Lagos to Kaduna, Lagos to Kano and Calabar to Port Harcourt, urging the senate to approve the $6.1billion loan from China Exim Bank for the construction of the railways.

Recently the federal government was asking the Senates to approve $30billion loan to finance infrastruction in the country while Amaechi said the $6.1billion loan will be part of the $30billion loan.

The Minister declared this during a meeting with the Senate Committee on Land and Transport, when defending the 2017 budget; he said the government plans to use $3.4 billion for construction of Calabar-Port Harcourt railway, while $2.7billion for the construction of Lagos-Kaduna, $1.5 billion for Lagos-Ibadan railway and also Kano railway to cost $1.2 billion.

Amaechi stated: "It will do us good if the National Assembly can kindly approve this loan of $30 billion because the $6.1 billion is part of it and that is why we need the National Assembly to approve. What was approved was the 15% counterpart funding. But we need your approval to borrow."

According to Amaechi, the bank had already approved $1.5 billion loan to the government for construction of Lagos to Ibadan railway, while other fund were delayed by National Assembly, refused to approve the other loan deal.

In 2016, the Federal government remobilize the Itakpe-Ajaokuta-Warri central rail line project which had been abandon since 2012, while the project was about to be completed.

Amaechi explained that the site was abandon following the requests of N80 billion by the Contractors.

He said:"The contractors handling the project had discharged and left site. In fact when they briefed me, they said they have gotten completion certificate even when the project was yet to be completed though the construction of the tracks from Itakpe-Aladja but no station, communication, signal length, water or power so they are being remobilised to site. I have asked the permanent secretary to do an audit of what is on ground."

He also declared that the Ministry was in partnership with Chinese company over the construction of Aladja to Warri and Abuja to Itakpe railway project.

Amaechi said the projects would create a job opportunity in the country.

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