The Federal Government has said that the non-approval of the 30 billion dollars foreign loan by the senate had stalled the construction of the standard gauge rail line.

Workers at the construction site of the Lagos-Ibadan standard gauge rail line 

Minister of Transportation, Mr Rotimi Amaechi, disclosed this on Wednesday in a statement by Mr Mohammed Idris, Head of Press Unit, Federal Ministry of Transportation.

‘‘The Minister reiterated that what was actually stalling the projects was the non-approval of the $30 billion Foreign Loan request by the Federal Government to the National Assembly.’’

He stressed that the money was ‘‘needed to construct the standard gauge rail line from Port Harcourt to Maiduguri.

‘‘We didn’t abandon any rail project, all the projects are there.

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”The truth is that we can’t go to work without funds and that can come when the Senate approves the $30billion loan request,” he said.

The minister disclosed that most of the railway projects would be linked to the ports when completed to make the movement of cargoes easier and reduce pressure on the roads.

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Amaechi assured all Nigerians, especially those from the South East geo-political zone that every zone would benefit from the rail line being constructed by the Federal Government.

He, however, clarified that the South East zone was not excluded in the on-going revitalisation of rail projects by the Federal Government.

The minister said that the Itakpe–Ajaokuta-Warri rail line that was abandoned for about 34 years commenced free test run on Nov. 25. (NAN)

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