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The Federal Ministry of Transport has attained not less than 71.2 per cent performance of its 2013 budget, the Minister of Transport, Senator Idris Umar, has said.
Besides the National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA), Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Nigerian Institute of Transport Technology (NITT), Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), the Federal Ministry of Transport has Nigerian Shippers Council (NSC), the Maritime Academy of Nigeria (MAN), Oron, Akwa Ibom State, and Nigeria Railway Corporation under its watch.
Umar, who disclosed this when he received in audience members of the House Committee on Land Transport, led by the Chairman Hon. Davies Sokonte, said before the year runs out, the budget performance level of the ministry would “rise considerably especially when the ongoing feasibility studies are completed”.
Members of the House Committee were in the Dipharima House, the corporate headquarters of the Federal Ministry of Transport, Abuja as part of their oversight functions as legislators.
The minister expressed appreciation to the committee members for their visit even as he made a presentation on the budget performance report of the ministry since the beginning of the year. The presentation covered appropriation, releases and implementation of the 2013 budget.
He informed the committee members that President Goodluck Jonathan was passionate about the implementation of constituency projects and had directed that these projects should receive considerable attention to ensure timely implementation.
On measures put in place to prevent accidents on rail lines across the country, Umar disclosed that a maintenance contract had been awarded by the federal government to upgrade railway signalling and communication within the country. According to the minister, NRC is working assiduously to increase the number of coaches in response to increasing demand for rail services and also working in partnership with relevant stakeholders across the country to dissuade passengers who sit on top of moving trains.
Deputy Director, Public Relations, Federal Ministry of Transport, Mrs. Yetunde Sonaike, in a statement obtained by THISDAY quoted Umar saying that construction of the Eastern rail line was on course.
The statement also quoted the Managing Director of NRC, Mr. Seyi Sijuwade, saying that the line is 45 percent completed and effort is being made towards the completion of the project.
Sokonte, in his response, thanked Umar for his presentation which highlighted the significant achievements attained under his leadership. The legislator stated that their oversight visit would be completed when they visit the various projects mentioned in the presentation.
He noted and thanked the minister for the significant attention the ministry paid to the implementation of the constituency projects under its purview.