The Federal Executive Council (FEC) yesterday okayed about ₦718 million for the purposes of providing security services and surveillance of the Abuja light rail transportation system.
Muhammed Bello who is the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), made this disclosure on Wednesday after the meeting presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari in Abuja.
He said: ‘I presented a memo at the Federal Executive Council meeting of today and it approved a contract for the provision of security services for the Abuja Light Rail Mass Transit System.
‘These companies; Messers Al-Ahali Security Guards Limited and Messers Seaguard Security and Protective Company Limited will provide security to the entire 45 kilometers of track including 12 stations.’
‘He explained that these security services will also protect the key infrastructure on the rail tracks, the signaling, electrical system and communication equipment.
‘Al-Ahali security guard Limited is going to secure 27.4 kilometres of the track, covering eight stations at the cost of N407, 214,000 over a two year period.
‘Seaguard Securities and Protective Company Limited is going to secure 18 kilometres of the rail tracks including four railway stations and that is at a cost of N310, 979,250.’
Minister of transport, Umar Sambo disclosed that the FEC approved N1.4bn for the purchase of spare parts and repairs of a crane of the Nigeria Railway Corporation.
‘Approval was given in the total sum of N1, 491, 065, 722.72 inclusive of 7.5 percent VAT, with a completion period of 12 months,’ Sambo said.
Following an attack on the Abuja-Kaduna train line that caused operations to be suspended, the Federal Government recently decided to take action.
Gunmen had detonated explosives and attacked the passengers in the March incident (kidnapped scores). The Federal Government stated it cannot reinstate rail services at this time months after the occurrence.
According to Muazu Sambo, minister of transportation, such a decision would be inconsiderate to the suffering of families whose relatives are still held hostage.
He claims that the government is looking into the best surveillance technology to buy in order to efficiently regulate the tracks along the Abuja to Kaduna line, as well as concessioning it through a Public Private Partnership (PPP) framework.