The reason the Federal government approved a rail line to Daura, President Buhari’s hometown has been revealed by the Minister of Transportation, Mr. Rotimi Amaechi.
According to Amaechi, Daura connects the country with neighbouring countries.
Mr. Rotimi Amaechi further added that it was noticed by the government that Niger import through Ghana, Togo and even Benin Republic because of the absence of linking rail lines to other areas.
After the monthly project steering committee meeting on the $1.5bn Lagos-Ibadan rail project, Amaechi spoke with the journalist and he said the competition will be tackled by the project.
The doubt created by the approval of the rail line to Daura is being corrected by Amaechi when he said the line will not stop at Daura.
He said: “We realised that we had competitors from our land-locked neighbours, competitors like Ghana, Togo and even Benin Republic. These landlocked neighbours are importing through these countries because we don’t have rail lines that go to them.
“So to address this situation, Mr President approved a rail line that will go to Maragi in Niger. But that rail line which will come from Kano to Maragi in Niger must pass through some cities. So the rail line passes through Kazuare and then Daura before proceeding to Jibya and then Maragi. Is it that when the rail line gets to Kazuare, it jumps into the air over Daura? No, it has to pass through Daura to get to Jibiya and Maragi. It’s quite unfortunate that people read meanings to a rail line going to Daura.
“With this rail line, it addresses the competition we have with Ghana and Togo for our landlocked neighbours. So we can now tell our landlocked neighbours that we can take their goods and services from our ports in Lagos to their country.
But one thing good for me as a man that has the mandate to connect all state capitals by rail is that, from Daura, we will also link Katsina State, thereby leaving us with just three more State capitals to connect- Zamfara, Sokoto and Kebbi.”