February 3, 2021

Gridlock: 8.72km Apapa port link to Lagos-Ibadan railway project ready for take-off — Contractor

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File image of traffic jam caused by container-laden trucks and tankers on Mile 2-Apapa Expressway.

As local pre-paid meters producers in Lagos kicks off operation end of February

By Olasunkanmi Akoni

The contractor handling the over $1.6 billion Lagos-Ibadan railway project has completed been fully connected to the Apapa port in Lagos awaiting inauguration by President Muhammadu Buhari.

The contractor, China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation, CCECC, disclosed in a statement that the linking of the port to the rail track was completed on Monday, January 25, 2020.

The statement reads, “On the morning of January 25, 2021, with the successful pouring of the last 25-metre monolithic track-bed superstructure of Apapa port breakbulk line, the Lagos-Ibadan railway was officially connected to the Apapa port in Lagos.

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“The Apapa port spur line of Lagos-Ibadan railway starts from the Mobolaji Johnson Station, Ebute-Metta, and extends southward to Apapa port, with a total length of 8.72km.

“As a crucial channel linking the mainline of the Lagos-Ibadan railway to the port, it has become an important transportation passage for the import and export of goods and now serves as a significant guarantee with regard to the comprehensive operational efficiency of the railway.”

The idea of extending the new standard gauge rail line to the Apapa port was an addendum to the project. It is meant to ease the Apapa gridlock by taking containers in and out of the port using the rail.

In the course of the construction, the terminal operator, APTM had initially tried to prevent the contractor from penetrating the port on the account that the work was impeding port activities.

It took the intervention of the Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi to restore sanity as he ordered the terminal operator to cooperate with the Chinese contractor to enable it to deliver the project on schedule.

Meantime, determined to create jobs and a business-friendly environment, the Lagos State Government has assured that it will continue to provide support for the take-off and sustenance of enterprise in the state.

Lagos State Deputy Governor, Dr. Kadri Obafemi Hamzat stated this on Tuesday, while receiving the Chief Commercial Officer and Group Vice President, Africa of Elsewedy Electric who led his team on a courtesy visit to the deputy governor in his office in Alausa, Ikeja.

Speaking further, Hamzat assured that the state is open to engaging such businesses towards getting to take off and operate successfully.

Recalling an Executive Order issued by the state to patronize locally produced goods, Hamzat, said it was a strategy to ensure that Nigeria based companies operate sustainably.

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Chief Commercial Officer and Vice President of Elsewedy Electric, Mr. Mohammed Atef, said, the visit was to seek the support and cooperation of the state government on expanding its investment in the state and boost job creation as the company was set to resume its operation at its Badagry factory.

He stated that apart from producing transformers, the company will also produce prepaid meters for households. He said the operation will push the employment of Nigerians in the organization from 150 to 350 with a significant transfer of technology by way of training.

While stating that the company will become fully operational by the end of February, the Chief Commercial Officer disclosed that the organization is very interested and ready to support efforts by the government to develop the state.

Vanguard News Nigeria