The deadly attacks on Abuja-Kaduna trains and rail tracks would have been prevented if the Muhammadu Buhari government had spent an extra N3 billion on the rail project.
This is according to transportation minister Rotimi Amaechi who was reacting to Monday night’s bombing of rail tracks and the kidnapping and killing of passengers by bandits in Kaduna.
Amaechi, who made the comment during a visit to the scene of the first attack said that the government would have to spend another N3 billion to fix the damage done to the Abuja-Kaduna train service.
The minister said he came into Buhari’s government with sincerity but is being undermined by other government officials.
“We knew what the problem would be. We knew we needed to have digital security equipment. We applied for it,” Amaechi said.
“Because if we had those equipment, you will see nobody on that track. And I warned that lives will be lost. Now, lives are lost. Eight persons dead, 25 persons in the hospital. We don’t know how many persons have been kidnapped.
“And the cost of that equipment is just N3 billion. The cost of what we’ve lost is more than N3 billion. We’ve lost tracks, we’ve lost locomotives and coaches. We’ve lost human beings. And the equipment is just N3 billion.
“To fix all the things on that track now, will cost us more than N3 billion.
“And now even the things we said give us approval to buy — at the time we asked for it, dollar was N400, now it is N500.
“When you come with sincerity to government and your colleagues and people are stopping you, it is annoying.”