The Nigeria Federal Government is set to launch the Abuja Rail Mass Transit project later this month.
The project, which is the first light rail system in West Africa, was flagged-off by former President Olusegun Obasanjo in 2007 in an attempt to host the 2014 Commonwealth Games.
The Government had earlier disclosed that tracks, as well as 12 stations of the first phase of the projects, were already completed while procurement of rolling stock (wagons, etc) was ongoing.
Tolu Ogunlesi, the special assistant to President Muhammadu Buhari on digital media, disclosed that the trial phase took place today, ahead of the launch which has been scheduled to hold later this month.
“Today we tour #AbujaMetro, ahead of the launch. The first light rail system in West Africa. Phase 1 completed; 2 Lines, Yellow and Blue, with Connections to Abuja Airport and the National Rail Line” Ogunlesi tweeted.
“Took us about 20 minutes from Abuja Metro Station direct to Idu, where the #AbujaMetro connects to the National Rail Service (Lagos-Kano/Abuja-Kaduna). There are a couple of stations in between that we didn’t stop at, so the ideal journey will take slightly longer.”
The project would connect the city centre to Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport and would offer a light rail transport system that would ease transport challenges in the city.
Former President Olusegun Obasanjo initiated the project with an official groundbreaking ceremony in May 2007 in order to host Commonwealth Games in 2014. But lack of funds for the project delayed its completion.
Over 1000 companies expressed interest in 17 categories of projects for the 2017 capital projects of the Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC). The Managing Director of the NRC, Engr. Fidet Okhiria disclosed this on Tuesday while declaring open the process for the opening of bids for the projects.
The formal opening of bids held at the corporate headquarters of the NRC in Lagos had representatives of firms who have bided for one contract or the other in attendance. The MD represented by the Director of Operations, Mr. Niyi Ali said the open bidding was aimed at getting the best firms to carry out the projects lined up for implementation in the 2017 fiscal year.
He assured the companies that the NRC would be fair, transparent and impartial in the bidding process which explains why they have made the process open in line with the Procurement Act of 2004. The projects include the Procurement of Tools, Equipment and Materials for emergency repairs and maintenance of Tracks; Renovation/Upgrade of Railway Stations and other buildings together with associated facilities (nationwide).
Procurement of Locomotives, Coaches, Wagons, Railway Inspection Vehicles and Cranes (Narrow Gauge and/or Standard Gauge); Procurement/Rehabilitation and Installation of equipment for Mechanical/Electrical, Security, Printing, Operations, Civil and ICT facilities; Generation of Alternative Revenue for the Corporation, Insurance Services, among others.