Senate Summons Amaechi Over $5,851Bn Rail Project Loan

The Senate yesterday summoned the minister of transport, Rotimi Amaechi to appear before it to explain reasons for the exclusion of the south east from the proposed loan of $5,851 billion from China Exim Bank to execute the modernisation of Lagos-Kano, Kano-Kaduna, Lagos-Ibadan, and Lagos-Calabar rail segment.
This follows a motion moved by Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe (PDP Abia South) during plenary titled, “Outright Omission of Eastern Corridor Rail Line in the request for approval of Federal Government 2016-2015 External Borrowing (Rolling Plan)”.
Abaribe said that the federal government had on April 26, 2017 laid before the National Assembly a request seeking an approval for a loan of $5,851 billion from China Exim Bank to execute the rail project.
He noted that the above sections of the rail line that the loan was being sought for covers only a section of the country, that is, the western corridor or sections.
“The Eastern section of the rail segment, which has a link between the South Eastern to North Eastern parts of the rail line, is completely excluded from the request”, he said.
Abaribe averred further that, “the loan being a federal government borrowing would be paid for by all sections of the country; therefore every section of the country should be taken into consideration.”
According to him, there is a railway master plan developed by the Ministry of Transport and of which such plan has not being referred to in the current borrowing plan.


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