FG Orders Resumption Of Abuja-Kaduna Train Service

Train services resumed on the Abuja-Kaduna route on October 23, 2021.
A file photo of a section of the Abuja-Kaduna train service route.

BY GODWIN OBI

The Abuja-Kaduna train service will resume on May 23, the Federal Government said on Monday.

Train services had been suspended on the route after terrorists attacked a train, fatally shot several persons, and abducted scores of passengers in March.

Most of those abducted are still in captivity.

In a statement signed by spokesperson Yakubu Mahmood, the Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC) said the decision to resume services does not mean efforts to secure the safe release of those abducted will be put on hold.

The families of those abducted have threatened to resist the reopening of the train service.

” . . . the Government wishes to assure the relatives of the abducted citizens still in captivity that the safe rescue of these passengers is a top priority and not to misconstrue the resumption of train services, as abandonment or nonchalant attitude of the government towards their plight,” the NRC statement said.

“The Federal Government will never abdicate its responsibility in rescuing these valuable citizens, however, the government assures of its resolve not to succumb to threats by any faceless group.”

Improved security

In its statement, the NRC said additional security measures are being put in place to beef up security at the train stations and along the track.

“These measures are not only for the Abuja-Kaduna Train Service (AKTS) but also for all the passenger train services especially on the standard gauge railway lines,” the statement said.

“Consequently, the passengers are hereby enjoined to cooperate with the NRC in order to enjoin improved service delivery, safety and comfort by patiently complying with additional measures that will surely be introduced for the safety of our passengers, such as requesting for passengers National Identification Numbers (NIN) as part of our internal security check.”

The NRC said customers must present a Valid Photo Identification Card (ID) and a reachable telephone number of Next of Kin (NOK) or close relative before boarding a train.

Online and offline purchase of tickets must contain the passengers individual profile or identification data, the NRC said.

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