The Nigerian Railway Corporation will today (Saturday) begin the test run of free passenger ride on the new standard gauge rail from Abeokuta to Lagos for three months, the Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, said during the official test running of the Lagos-Ibadan rail project in Abeokuta.
Amaechi said that the free train ride will start on Saturday February 9 to convey passengers from Lagos to Abeokuta.
“The train will run free from Lagos to Abeokuta where people can join it from Iju station.
“This is the third standard gauge in the country. The first is in Warri-Itakpe, the Kaduna Abuja and the ongoing Lagos-Ibadan line.
“This is not an inauguration ceremony but we decided to put the train on the track to convey people from Lagos to Abeokuta freely from Kilometre 21 Iju Lagos to Kilometre 82 Laderin, Abeokuta,” he said.
Ogun State Governor, Ibikunle Amosun, said that the rail project would bring economic advantage to Abeokuta residents.
Amosun said the project is not a window dressing but a reality development.
“We are not playing politics here and it is not a window dressing. We appreciate President Muhammadu Buhari for fulfilling his promises.
“What we are doing today is what will make the country be among the comity of developed countries. When it start its operations, the train will bring economic growth to the residents in the various communities.
“The standard gauge line will remove lots of vehicles on the road thereby reduce pressure and accident on the road.
“Honestly, very soon all these places will become mega city as more people will run to Ogun to work and reside,” he said.
The Chairman, Senate Committee on Land Transport, Sen. Gbenga Ashafa, commended President Buhari for fulfilling his promise made in 2015.
Ashafa said that the president specifically mentioned the rail project and fulfilled his promises.