By Salisu Sani-Idris
The Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Malam Muhammad Bello has assured that the Abuja Light Rail will resume service before the end of his administration in May.
Bello gave the assurance when he featured the 20th Edition of the President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration scorecard series organised by the Federal Ministry of Information and Culture on Monday in Abuja.
“Another important milestone achievement of President Buhari’s administration is the infrastructure development of the Abuja Light Rail.
“When we came in 2015, about 52 per cent of the project was done and we pushed it to 100 per cent.
“And many of you will want to wonder why the Abuja Light Rail is not working; it is not working now because of the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We had to stop the operation because as you know the light train system basically is a mass movement, so if you don’t have much siting capacity, many people will stand up and when you stand up, you face each other.
“So, it was obviously very difficult to maintain social distancing but we are done with that all that; the carriages are here and by the grace of God before, we will resume.”
The minister disclosed that about 12 stations had been completed and about five of them, the roads were still under construction.
“These are works we do in the satellite town because the structure of the FCT is that we have development in the urban area; that is the Federal Capital City as well as development in the satellite towns.
“But the standards we maintain for infrastructure for the Federal Capital City itself, is the same that we maintain in the satellite towns; no difference whatsoever.
“Because the whole area is to encourage residents to stay in the satellite towns so that the chunk of the city that we have been able to do to a large extent,” Bello said.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the event was attended by the FCT Minister of State, Dr Ramatu Aliyu, the Permanent Secretary FCTA, Mr Olusade Adesola, all Mandate Secretaries of FCTA, six area councils chairmen.
Others are the Executive Secretary, Federal Capital Development Authority (FCDA), the Chief of Staff to the Minister and other officials of the administration.