Emulate Lagos, Minister tells governors as Tinubu inaugurates rail project

The Minister of Transport, Mr Sa’id Alkali, has urged other states to emulate Lagos State, saying the success of its Red Line rail project exemplified collaboration between the federal and state governments.

Alkali said that collaborative efforts between the Federal and State Governments enhances the wellbeing of the nation and its economy.

He said this at the official commissioning of the Lagos Rail Mass Transit (LRMT) Red Line on Thursday by President Bola Tinubu.

The transport minister noted that the historic moment being celebrated reflected the collaborative efforts of the Lagos State and the federal, which had led to the commissioning of the Red Line project.

Hey added that the ministry would work together with some state governors to achieve railway connection to enable choice of transportation for passengers, urging the governors to emulate Lagos State.

“I assure you that the Federal Ministry of Transportation is committed to providing support and expertise to consolidate this laudable achievement.

“Today’s commissioning is a singular promise in achieving this milestone in our administration. This will lead to high connectivity, improve livelihood, boost trade and improve visibility.

“The Federal Ministry of Transportation will support the realisation of the Renewed Hope Agenda of Mr President,” he said.

The Chinese Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr Cui Jianchun, commended Nigeria for giving them the opportunity to complete the Blue Line project.

Jianchun said the project would contribute immensely to Nigeria’s development.

“Mr President, today in China we celebrate an auspicious day which is a symbol of good things, and this shows that the commencement of the Red line project being today will be more successful.

“I also congratulate Mr President for making the 20-year project completed and we also want to use this opportunity to improve more on infrastructure and technology.

” There is need to improve more on security which will improve the country’s economic Gross Domestic Product generation,” he said.

The Deputy Governor, Lagos State, Dr Obafemi Hamzat, said that the commissioning of the project would not have been possible without President Tinubu’s vision during his tenure as governor of Lagos with the establishment of the Lagos State Metropolitan Area Transport Authority (LAMATA).

Hamzat pointed out that on Jan. 24, 2023, the Lagos State Government commissioned the Blue line which had five stations from Marina to Mile 2, now moving over 250,000 passengers on daily basis.

“The two Lagos rails completion is the first of its kind in West and Central Africa and the commissioning of the Red Line shows our administration’s commitment to uphold the electoral policies.

“We pledge our total commitment to transport infrastructure of Lagos State,” Hamzat said.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the Red Line project is a 37km rail route from Agbado to Marina with stations at Agbado, Iju, Agege, Ikeja, Oshodi, Mushing, Yaba, Oyingbo, Iddo, Ebute Ero and Marina.

As agreed by the Federal Govemment and LASG, the Red Line project is sharing the NRC rail track from Agbado to Ebute Metta Junction (EBJ) and then carry-on across the Lagoon to Marina via Iddo, with the Marina station sharing the hub with the Blue Line station integrated with other transport modes.

The Red Line is using the International Standard Gauge (1435mm) and is expected to carry 750,000 passengers daily at inception and 1,100,000 when fully operational.

The Red Line LRMT project is entirely funded by the LASG through a development loan syndication from domestic commercial banks.(NAN)