The Nigerian government needs about $16 billion to construct and modernise major rail lines, an official said.
This was revealed by the Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, on Thursday while speaking with State House correspondents after emerging from a meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari.
“You are aware that we have gotten approval for eastern flank of the Nigerian Railway modernisation which is from Port Harcourt to Maiduguri, which is cutting across Aba, Owerri, Enugu, Umuahia, down to Abakalili, Awka, Makurdi, Lafia, Bauchi, Gombe, Yola and to Damaturu and ends in Borno.
“And then the other railway from Kano to Maradi in Niger Republic and then (I came) to brief the president about how we are progressing with the negotiations for loans and possible financiers,” he said.
Amaechi also said he briefed Buhari about projects within the Lagos-Ibadan axis and what is being done we to complete the Lagos-Kano railway.
The transportation minister said his ministry has already been given approval for all the projects, adding that the government “has to look for the money first.”
“The money is not just there, it is a total of about $16 billion and you don’t just pluck $16 billion from the sky,” he said.
He also said the ministry is looking at the possibility of a public private partnership (PPP) for some of the projects.