The Federal Executive Council, FEC, on Wednesday, October 7, 2020, approved the rehabilitation and reconstruction of the Port Harcourt-Maiduguri Eastern Narrow Gauge railway project for the cost of $3.02 billion.
FEC also approved the setting up of two shoes, garments, and leather processing hubs in Aba and Janguza, in Abia and Kano states respectively, under a Private, Public Partnership, PPP, arrangement. Briefing State House correspondents at the end of the virtual FEC meeting presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari at the Council Chamber, Presidential Villa, Abuja, the Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi said FEC also approved the construction of a deep seaport at Bonny and a railway industrial park in Port Harcourt.
He said that the deep seaport and the rail industrial park will be funded through the Public, Private Partnership, PPP, arrangement and at no cost to the federal government, adding that the PPP-funded would be executed at $241.2 million (industrial park) and $461.9 million (Bonny deep seaport) respectively.
According to him, “The Federal Executive Council FEC has approved the award of contracts for the rehabilitation and reconstruction of the Port Harcourt-Maiduguri eastern narrow gauge railway, with new branch lines and trans-shipment facilities.
“They’ve also approved the construction of a new deep seaport in Bonny, under PPP and the construction of a railway industrial park in Port Harcourt.
“The railway line will be at the cost of $3,020,279,549. The industrial park, which is under PPP, at no cost to federal government, will cost $241,154,389.31. The Bonny deep seaport will cost $461,924,369, at no cost to the federal government.
“The Port Harcourt to Maiduguri narrow gauge railway will have new branch lines: from Port Harcourt to Bonny and from Port Harcourt to Owerri are new lines.
There’s another connecting to narrow gauge to standard gauge at Kafanchan. There is a branch line from Gombe or before Maiduguri to Damaturu and Gashau.
That’s what has been approved.” Also speaking at the briefing, the Minister of Interior, Rauf Aregbesola, said the FEC approved the setting up of two shoes, garments, and leather processing hubs in Aba and Janguza, in Abia and Kano states, under a PPP arrangement.
He said the project, which would worth N5.1 billion in investment, would be managed by two companies; a Nigerian and Chinese and will provide about 4,330 direct and indirect job opportunities.
He said, “The Council approved the Full Business Skills Compliance Certificate issued by Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission, ICRC, Abuja, for the design, finance, upgrade, operate, and transfer of the Nigeria Correctional Service Shoe, Garment, and Leather Processing Factory located in Aba, Abia State as well as Janguza, Kano State under a Public-Private Partnership, PPP.
“This full business skills certificate and the investment that will come therefrom amount to 5 billion, 100 million naira (N5,100,000,000). Invariably, when the partnership comes into effect, the benefit is enormous.
About 1,330 people will have direct employment, while about 3,000 people will have indirect employment.
“The benefit besides the employment of Nigerians is the opportunity for training of the inmates of our correctional facilities in Janguza, Kano State, and Aba in Abia State.
The contract for full business skills compliance certificate is given to Messrs LG Investment Limited, a Nigerian company which is partnering with a Chinese company, Full Technology Incorporated from Beijing, China”, he explained.
On his part, the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Niyi Adebayo said that the council approved the contract for the procurement and installation of automotive/mechatronics equipment in special centres in six geopolitical zones, as well as three pilot workshops and automotive service hubs for the National Automotive Design and Development Council, NADDC, at the cost of N1.8 billion.
He explained that the reason for the project “is that with the kind of vehicles being manufactured today, we need training institutes that will train our mechanics and our youths how to maintain and service these vehicles.”
Lai Mohammed, the minister of information and culture, who briefed on behalf of the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, Mohammed Bello, the Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, the Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika, and the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, SGF, Boss Mustapha, said that the memos from the ministries were also approved by the FEC.
He said, “I will start with the Honorable Minister of the Federal Capital Territory Administration whose memo for the award and contract of the final design of engineering infrastructure and production of tendered documents for Kabusa district phase three of the FCT, Abuja an area of about 850 hectares which will be mixed use of both private and government, residential and offices.
It was approved for the sum of N183, 709, 480, 50k to Messrs Techno Engineering, and Consult Limited.
“The Minister of Aviation also presented a memo seeking approval for the rehabilitation of the various screening machines nationwide at the cost of N654 million.
You would notice that with the incident of COVID-19 pandemic, a new protocol sanctioned by IATA and other Aviation authorities has now come into our airports which entails more of social distancing. So you need more points to screen passengers and their luggage.
So this is what has necessitated for the rehabilitation of those screening machines that have broken down.
“Also on behalf of the Minister of Works and Housing, I want to report that his memo for the completion of the rehabilitation of the Abeokuta-Ibadan road, a distance of 72 kilometres was approved today.
It was a memo asking for augmentation by N788 million to bring the project cost to N4.78 billion plus six months extension time for construction. So we hope that by 2021, this road will be completed.
You need to note also that this was a contract that was awarded in 2010 but due to paucity of funds and other constraints, we have to take it over.
“The SGF on behalf of Mr. President also presented a memo which was approved seeking Council’s approval for the purchase of 21 operational vehicles for the Federal Road Safety Corps in favour of Messrs Pan Nigeria Ltd in total sum of N292, 615 million.
The purpose of the memo is to enhance the operational capability and capacity of the Corps so that we can stop the carnage on our roads and also secure our roads better.
“The unique thing about this memo is that these vehicles are being sourced from one of our local assemble plants, Peugeot Nigeria Ltd in Kaduna.”