The Federal government, has disclosed its readiness to flag off the first phase of the Lagos to Abeokuta rail line for passenger use.
This is just as it declared, that there would be free train ride for residents of the area for two months.
The Minister of Transportation, Hon. Chibuike Amaechi, who made the disclosure to Journalists in Abeokuta on Friday, at the monthly routine inspection tour of the railway project, also announced that the Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo will be coming for the flag off come February 6, 2019.
The Minister, also stated that he was impressed with the work so far carried out on the project, adding that two coaches would be deployed from Itakpe-Warri railway station to make four coaches which would run the free ride for two months.
“I am impressed and from what I see, the Vice President is still going to ride on the train on the 6th except he has other arrangements. Once the Vice President flags it off, we will start using it and it will be free. The free ride will be for two months.
“This first phase from Lagos to Abeokuta will reduce passenger travel time from one hour to 45 minutes and the reason why it is 45 minutes is because people might stop in different locations.
“What gives me joy most with this project is the fact that I can travel from Lagos to Abeokuta in less than one hour. The work is about 60 percent completed”, Amaechi disclosed.
On the Abeokuta to Ibadan axis, he stated that it should be ready before the end of June, 2019, adding that the only problem that might be encountered, will not be the tracks but the stations and the communication systems.
“It will be difficult if it is a two-way traffic, but we are avoiding that till we install the communication systems”, he said.
Responding to questions on whether there are litigations on Iju to Abeokuta axis, he said: “There is none but if there is any, it will be inside the yard of NRC and there is one building that we are yet to pay compensation but it is not in court and we are still negotiating the compensation”.