By Ignatius Ushie
All is now set for Thursday’s official commissioning of the Lagos-Ibadan rail line, by President Muhammadu Buhari. The Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, who is already in Lagos for the big event, on Wednesday, undertook a last minute inspection tour of the terminals and sub-stations along the 156km route, preparatory for the big event. Amaechi, accompanied by key officials of the Ministry including Dr. Magdalene Ajani, Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Transportation; Fidet Okhiria, Managing Director of the Nigerian Railway Corporation among others kick-started the inspection at the Ebute-Metta-Apapa main complex where work has been completed before heading for the Asiwaju Bola Tinubu Complex.
At the Apapa port, event planners could be seen putting make-shift structures in place ahead of the commissioning as the Minister expressed satisfaction with the level of work done. Residents of adjourning communities trooped out enmasse as they waved to Amaechi who undertook a train ride across all the stations, inspecting terminals, underpasses and overpasses. Built by the China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation, CCECC at a cost of $1.5 billion, the double-track standard gauge has 10 sub-stations between Lagos and Ibadan with modern coaches already procured by the federal government, passengers can now afford to breathe a sigh of relief as they need only two hours to transit from Lagos to Ibadan.