Standard Gauge: Amaechi Charges Contractor to Ensure Project Completion

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Rotimi Amaechi

Ugo Aliogo

The Minister of Transportation, Mr. Rotimi Amaechi, has commended the pace of work at the Lagos-Ibadan standard gauge rail project, especially the construction of bridges at Ogun River, Ikereku, Abeokuta, Ogun State.

He also called for the procurement of more equipment by the Chinese construction, CCECC, in order to achieve the project completion deadline of December.

Amaechi who disclosed this yesterday at Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital, during an inspection tour of some substations between Ibadan and Abeokuta, stated that there was need to employ more workers and equipment to meet the December deadline.

He insisted that in line with the project completion, CCECC, the Ministry of Transport, and the Nigeria Railway Corporation (NRC) must support the construction work with two engineers each before the next inspection tour.

He said one of the challenges facing the completion of the project is that the Chinese company is not ready to buy more equipment to speed up the pace of work, adding that they are concerned with cutting cost and increasing profit.

“What worries me is not even the issue of the track anymore, but the stations. We have just dealt with the issue of the design. There is a disagreement between TEAM and CCECC not in terms of structural or mechanical, but more of the fact that they have not been able to bring the design for TEAM to approve. We have given them two weeks to turn in the designs of all the stations. I hope they will start at the same time to build. Some of the stations will not take one or two months to complete especially now that the rain is over,” he noted.

He explained that they are still on target to further put pressure on CCECC, adding that they have been told that anytime they bring the work plan, the ministry wants to juxtapose it with the achievement for that month, adding that “there was a huge challenge in getting stations at Abeokuta but that has been resolved.”

Amaechi further stated that the Chinese company is ready to launch the beam, but noted that the challenge with the launching of the beam is that equipment is inadequate.