Port Harcourt-Aba train route to start by March end

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The Federal Government says train services on the Port Harcourt to Aba route would commence operations by the end of March.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the Port Harcourt-Aba rail project is part of the larger Port Harcourt-Maiduguri railroad project initiated by former President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration.

The Managing Director, Nigeria Railway Corporation, Mr Fidet Okhiria, disclosed this on Saturday in Port Harcourt after leading a delegation to test-run the reconstructed of Eastern Narrow Guage Rail line.

He said workers were currently putting finishing touches on the tracks to ensure that full train operations could begin within the month.

He said, “I am impressed with what I saw today, especially being able to ride the locomotive and wagon on the tracks.

“Last time we visited, we could not use the train because the contractor said it was not proper to run on the train due to imbalance of the tracks.

“The Minister of Transportation, Mu’azu Sambo, has directed that the Port Harcourt route be connected to rail as well as initiate the linkage of Onne Port.”

He said the government was pushing the contractor to make the track safe by deploying semi-automatic signalling of the machine points rather than manual operation.

He added, “Despite resource challenges, the contractors are doing their best and our goal is to achieve this within the next two weeks.

“With this, we aim to commence passenger train services hopefully within March and fully resume transporting people from Port Harcourt to Aba by the end of March”.

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