FCTA to synergize with Nasarawa Gov’t on rail line, road network development – Wike
By Joyce Remi-Babayeju
The Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Barr. Nyesom Wike, has disclosed the FCT Administration’s readiness to synergize with the Nasarawa Government to develop rail line and roads transportation network.
Wike said this when the Nasarawa State Gov. Abdullahi Sule visited him in his office in Abuja on Friday.
Wike who acknowledged the closeness of Nasarawa to the FCT, emphasized the need for a working synergy for the development of the two entities.
According to the minister, FCTA would open discussion with the Nasarawa government on the development of the metro rail line from Apo to Keffi, and the completion of the road network from Abacha Barracks to Masaka.
He noted that the metro line was key but expensive.
He further stated that efforts were on top gear to rehabilitate the metro line as directed by President Bola Tinubu, which would be completed in the next seven months.
Wike attributed the key challenge affecting the development efforts of the FCT to shortage of funds, adding that many projects and contracts have been awarded but without execution due to insufficient funds.
Wike said that the FCT Administration was identifying major projects with high impact that can stimulate development to be financed and completed.
He, however, said that Abuja cannot grow if it did not do anything that would equally impact positively on Nasarawa state.
Speaking on the development of land for a clean city, as proposed by the Nasarawa government, the minister said he cannot make a commitment a
now due to a shortage of funds.
He also emphasized the need for stronger partnership with the Nasarawa government to tackle insecurity.
Gov. Sule said that his visit was to congratulate Wike for the well-deserved appointment as the minister of the FCT and to also discuss the issue of development for mutual benefits.
He said that over 40 percent of people working in Abuja were residing in Nasarawa State, stating that this calls for partnership for development.
“This is why we have this road from Abacha Barracks down to the border that is so difficult to define in Nyanya.”
“We have challenges with transportation. But thanks to the FCT for the road network from Abacha to the border. We understand that the road will continue all the way to Masaka.”
“The FCT has a part to play, and the state government will do its parts.”
Gov. Sule explained standing on the agreement, the Nasarawa government was to provide the needed security, collapse the 22 motor parks causing traffic on the road and build a terminal in their place.
“A terminal that could accommodate 900 vehicles has been built on seven hectares of land and already in use.”
“So, we have met our part of the bargain to see that the project is concluded.”
He said, “I am hoping that Mr. Project (Wike), without any doubt in my mind, will meet the other side of the bargain so that we will have the clean city we are looking for.”
Moreover, Sule noted that his government would tap from the FCT on the additional metro train line development.
“We discussed with the previous minister that whatever it is, we don’t want free meal, Nasarawa state will bring its part of the bargain for the rail line development from Apo going all the way to Keffi.”
“We have even initiated a discussion with CCECC Nig. Ltd and a Russian company that are willing to construct. With this, we can say we are more than happy to work jointly with the FCT to develop that.”
According to the Governor, the development of the rail transport linking Abuja city with Nasarawa would open another area of development for housing, not only for Nasawa residents but also for the FCT.
He revealed that at the border, just about from kilometers from Maitama 2, the government has about 13,000 hectares of land at Garku-Kubusu for housing development.
He added that it was the initiative of the previous governor of the state that was sold to the FCT at a joint development.
“That is an area we sold to the FCT, that we can jointly build another Kigali and build another Dubai. We cannot do it alone, but with the help of the FCT, we can build a clean city,” Gov. Sule said.