Abuja-Kaduna Train: Disciplinary Measures Await NRC MD

The Minister of Transportation, Saidu Alkali, on Sunday, expressed his commitment to tackle the existing challenges being faced in the country’s railway services.

He said that his actions are in line with the vision of President Bola Tinubu of Renewed Hope, who has made infrastructure development a priority.

He also hinted that the Managing Director of the Nigeria Railway Corporation may be held accountable for the lapses in the Abuja-Kaduna railway operations.

The minister revealed this during a surprise visit to Idu Train station in Abuja, where he personally inspected the coaches and found several problems that require immediate attention. Among them, some of the toilet facilities were not working properly.

He said, “It is out of a desire to achieve the agenda of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu of Renewed Hope. So from the experience when the visit is scheduled they’ll be able to put some of the things in place because they are aware you are coming to see.

“So, seeing is believing, as I have seen by myself. I inspected the coaches. Some of the toilet facilities are not working.”

Furthermore, the minister noted that he received complaints from security escorts regarding unpaid allowances for the past five months.

“I received a complaint from the security escorts that in the last five months their allowances were not paid and I am happy that the MD of NRC is appearing before the ministry on Tuesday to brief. So, if he comes I am now well informed the lifts and escalators aren’t working, which makes it very difficult for the elderly and the disabled persons to use the train for travelling.

“Therefore, he would explain why disciplinary action wouldn’t be taken against him,” the minister stressed.

Alkali also explained how he intends to improve the railway services quickly, and promised that the public will see the escalators and the lifts working again within two days.

He said that he will make sure that the security escorts get their overdue payments, and that their allowances will be cleared by Monday.

“I’ll make sure that we fix the escalators in the next 48 hours and the lift will be working in the next 48 hours.

“I am also going to ensure that the outstanding allowances of the escorts are paid on Monday.

“I am going to liaise with the Ministry of Defense so that we’re going to ensure that we’ve maintained unmanned area vehicles so that it will give them protection from the air.

“The coaches are unkempt. The seats aren’t clean. So, we need to ensure that all these things are put in place.”