The House of Representatives has resolved to investigate the alleged abandonment of the Eastern Rail Line, the Port Harcourt-Maiduguri section, after the Federal Government awarded the reconstruction contract for N72.34bn.
At the plenary on Wednesday, the House resolved to set up an ad hoc committee to investigate the N19.2bn railway rehabilitation contract for the Port Harcourt-Makurdi section which was awarded to Esser Contracting Industry Company Incorporated.
The panel would also confirm the status of the entire contracts awarded for the 1443km Eastern Railway Line for approximately N72.34bn to Messrs Esser Contracting and Industry Company (Turkey), CGGC Global Projects Nigeria Limited and Lingo Nigeria Limited (in association with Strasky Husty and Partners Ltd of Czech Republic.
The resolution was sequel to the unanimous adoption of a motion moved by Mzondu Bem and titled ‘Need to Investigate the Status of the Contract Awarded to Railway Track Network Eastern Line, Port Harcourt to Maiduguri.’
Moving the motion, Bem said Messrs Esser Contracting and Industry Company (Turkey), CGGC Global Projects Nigeria Limited and Lingo Nigeria Limited, in association with Strasky Husty and Partners Limited of Czech Republic, were in 2011 awarded the contract to rehabilitate the 1443km Port Harcourt–Maiduguri section of the Eastern Railway Line for about N72.34bn.
He said, “The House noted that 10 years after the award of the contract, there is no evidence to show that work has commenced on the site, with investigations revealing that budgetary provisions were made in this regard from 2010 to 2012.”
The Federal Executive Council had on October 7, 2020, approved the sum of $3.02bn for the rehabilitation and reconstruction of the Port Harcourt-Maiduguri eastern narrow gauge railway.
The Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, had said the railway would have new branch lines and trans-shipment facilities.