- Lack of Fund Stalls $5.3b Ibadan-Kano Rail Project
The recently approved $5.3 billion Ibadan-Kano rail project has been stalled due to lack of fund expected from China Exim Bank, the financial institution approved to fund the project, the Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi stated.
The minister stated this while explaining why work has not commenced on Ibadan-Kano standard gauge rail line following the Federal Executive Council approval.
“The Ibadan to Kano has been awarded. The only thing that is delaying it is the loan. Once we get it, we will start from Kano to Kaduna and see how we will go from Ibadan to Ilorin,” Amaechi stated while inspection of the Lagos to Ibadan rail line.
“If we do get the loan for Ibadan to Kano, we won’t have delays. We can then start quickly from Kano to Kaduna and Ibadan to Ilorin so we can quickly finish.”
According to the minister, the Ibadan-Kano rail project is part of the Lagos-Kano rail original plan. He also said while Abuja to Kaduna has been completed Lagos to Ibadan segment is nearing completion but expressed concerns over recent delay of work on the project.
He said: “The contractor has not done too well. I used the phrase too well because at a time, they did us proud by trying to push this job. They claim that at the end of the last government, we were owing them some money and we had not given approvals for the extra and additional jobs. But that is not an excuse because we will still have given the approval. So they have slowed down so badly. We need to get them to that speed that they were before the last government was dissolved. We paid them on Friday. The cabinet and president has approved the extra works so they have no excuse now.”
Speaking on the coastal rail, Amaechi said: “I am from Rivers state and it is important that we do that. We already applied for a loan. If we get the loan, will start the segment from Port Harcourt to Warri and from Benin to Onitsha. The loan will be from China but not China EXIM Bank.”