The Federal Government has reiterated that its ongoing railway projects would ensure efficiency in transportation system across the country.
Permanent Secretary in the Ministry Transportation, Sabiu Zakari, stated this at a conference, on Monday, during the 15th National Council on Transportation (NCT) in Sokoto.
The 3-day conference was themed ‘Efficiency of Intermodalism in Transportation: panacea for Economic Recovery.’
Zakari maintained that transportation holds the key to the economic development of the nation.
He also noted that transportation constitutes a significant factor in the sustainable development of any economy through the facilitation of the movement of goods and persons, promotion of social cohesion, integration and unity of a country.
According to him, “Nigeria suffers from dearth of transport infrastructure and services as well as lack of synergy between the various models of transportation. The current transport infrastructure and services are inadequate to cope with the country’s huge population and so the need to develop and integrate the various modes has become a necessity to enhance the nation’s transportation system.
“It is common knowledge that the economy is down and indeed the transportation sector can contribute immensely to taking us out of that. Transportation provides the link to the markets, the industrial centres, the extractive industries and the agricultural sector. The sector links the people in the North to the South and the East to the West”. Zakari explained.
The Permanent Secretary revealed that the federal government has made modest strides in linking Apapa port to rail and bonded containers are currently being transported by rail from Apapa port to the Inland Container Nigeria limited (ICNL) Depot in Kaduna.
“This however is just the beginning; the plan is to connect all the Seaports, Airports and all the Inland Container Depots by rail.
“The vision is for a farmer in Sokoto to be able to send his goods from his farm by road to the nearest Inland Container Depot, where it would be carried by rail to one of the seaports for export to Europe, America or Asia”. He said.