Minister of Transportation Rotimi Amaechi has announced that the Abuja-Kaduna rail line will be completed and should be ready for use by July.
Briefing journalists after a brief inspection and test ride of the rail line, Mr. Amaechi assured Nigerians that the federal government would ensure that the rail line is properly maintained upon its completion.
"Is it sustainable? The answer is yes because it's on its own. If you say whether it will be subsidized, it will be. We are working out the details of how much it will cost to carry passengers and maintain it," the transport minister said.
"We are looking at bringing in Mr. President to commission it in July. In two weeks' time, they will do the test run of the track without passengers. After those two weeks, it will take another two weeks to do a test run with passengers and it will be free of charge. That will take us to the end of June, which means by the first week in July, we believe the president will come and flag it off for commercial service," he said.
"At the beginning we had done the test run but then it wasn't completed. Today it has been completed. So today is the first test run that we are doing on the completed standard gauge. The signaling, communication stations are all completed now so you can actually say today is the first day of test running the completed project," Mr. Amaechi said.
The minister added that his ministry would partner with the Nigeria Identity Management Authority to ensure smooth passenger registrations without interruption.