ITAKPE-AJOKUTA-WARRI RAIL LINE

“The Itakpe-Ajaokuta-Warri rail line is passing through the following communities in Delta (Aladja, Urjevwu, Orhowhorun, Agbarho, Ovwori, Okpara Inland, Abraka and Urhonigbe), in Edo (Idumuesah, Ewossa, Agbor, Ekpon, Igbanke, Isanlu, Ekehen, Uromi, Ubiaja, Aigere, Uzanu and Agenebode) and in Kogi (Nashe, Ajaokuta Steel Complex, and Itakpe). I think the Federal Government needs to work with the LGs in these area on the site development and land-use planning for this corridor to prevent uncordinated haphazard development.

A future extension of the Itakpe-Ajaokuta-Warri line northwards by about 200km will take it through Lokoja, Abaji, Gwagwalada, Kuje up to Idu linking up with the existing Abuja-Kaduna line and the planned Kaduna-Kano line.

With the dredging of the River Niger from Bifurcation at Forcados up to Warri, it means in not too distant future, goods coming into Warri Port will find their way all the way to Lokoja, Abuja, Kaduna and Kano.

Onitsha is just about 70km east of Agbor, the design of the Second Niger Bridge has already been modified to include a rail line at the centre, this means with some additional effort, a 70km rail line will link Agbor and through the Second Niger Bridge to the main Market in Onitsha.

There is an existing unused rail bridge already between Ajaokuta and Itobe, with some effort (not up to 5km of rail), the main rail can be linked with the bridge into Kogi East (servicing nearby communities such as Idah, Ayangba, Dekina and Ankpa).

There is the Lagos-Calabar Coastal line (under project preparation) that will take off from around Shagamu along the on-going Lagos-Ibadan line, passing through Benin, Warri, Yenagoa, Port Harcourt, Aba, Uyo and Calabar.

There is the planned Kano-Maiduguri line passing Dutse, Potiskum, Damaturu and Maiduguri, which will be sequenced after the Kaduna-Kano line is completed.

There is also the Kano-Dawanau-Jibiya line passing through the Dawanau (the largest grains market in West Africa) and Jibiya to complete the LAKAJI corridor.

The government is negotiating for the contract of Port Harcourt to Maiduguri which is about 2,000 kilometres with a spur from Owerri through Nnewi and Awka and then from there to Abakiliki, while proceeding on to Gombe with a spur to Yobe, and through Yola, and then to Borno.

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