The recently inaugurated Warri-Itakpe rail line commenced the transportation of passengers on Friday.
It is also getting set to start moving pipelines meant for the construction of the multi-billion dollar Ajaokuta-Kaduna-Kano gas pipeline.
Warri-Itakpe rail line, a 326km railway facility, was inaugurated by the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.) on September 29, 2020.
Nigerians had been looking forward to the full commencement of commercial operations of the train service after its official inauguration.
Providing updates on the new rail line, the Managing Director, Nigerian Railway Corporation, Fidet, told our correspondent on Sunday that the train commenced operations about two days ago.
When asked to state when full commercial operations would commence on the Itakpe-Warri line, Okhiria replied, “They started on Friday.”
On destinations being connected by the train service, he said, “On Friday we moved from Itakpe to Ajaokuta and this was because of the incident that was recorded between Ajaokuta and Itakpe, where a truck crashed.
“But by October 26 of this month, they will finish the repair work there and the full stretch should be covered.”
Asked what kind of services were rendered by the train, the NRC boss said, “We are moving passengers first. But we intend to move cargo.
“We are moving wagons from Abuja to Itakpe-Warri in order to move the pipes for the AKK construction. We are engaging the contractors handling the AKK project and they are engaging us.”
He added, “They want us to move their materials from Warri to Ajaokuta and we will be using the trains to do that.”
The AKK pipeline project, currently under construction, is to move gas across Kogi, Kaduna and Kano states.