Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari, some eight years after the project was initiated, inaugurated the country’s first metro rail service on Thursday, July 12, 2018 in the capital Abuja.

The President opened the rail line Thursday morning at the new metro station located in the Central Business District (CBD), Abuja.

“The completion of this very important project is a dream come true,” Mr Buhari said during the opening ceremony. “This accomplishment clearly demonstrates our commitment to addressing critical infrastructural projects,” he added.

After the launch, President Buhari and other dignitaries including Governor El-Rufai of Kaduna state, the FCT minister and other ministers, and journalists took a ride from the Abuja Metro Station to Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport.

While in transit from the Idu Metro Station to Airport Station, President Buhari interacted with Abiola Fatima Isa – the first train driver in Nigeria. Mr. Buhari also visit the control room.

Abuja Light Rail

The Abuja Light Rail mass transit is the first phase of a metro line for Nigeria’s capital city and covers 12 stations within the metropolis.

The entire metro system will be developed in six phases to cover the entire city and it will span 290km (180 miles).

The project is being undertaken by a Chinese firm at a cost of $824m (£623).

The Abuja Light Rail is the first functional metro rail in the Nigerian capital as well as the first Light Rail network in West Africa.

Proposed Routes

The Abuja rail mass transit project Phase 1 consists of a ‘Lot 1’ and ‘Lot 3’ line.

Lot 1 Line consists of Lot1A and Lot1B line. Total length is 23.718km.

Lot 1A (Proposed Stations) – Idu – Gwa Gwa – Dei Dei – Jibi – Gbazango – Byazhin – Kubwa

Lot 1B (Proposed Stations) – Ring Road 1 – Garki – Transportation Centre – Wuse – Employment Centre – Utako – Jabi I – Jabi II – Ring Road III – Gwarinpa – Karmo

Lot 3 (Proposed Stations) – Abuja – Stadium – National Park – Ring Road II – Wupa – Idu – Airport North – Airport

The complete network is planned to link Abuja with satellite towns such as Nyanya, Kubwa, Mararaba and Lugbe.

$US840 million, 78km Abuja Light Rail System (ALRS).

Some of the lines extend from the Federal Capital Territory into the neighbouring states.

By: ClaraDoku/techvoiceafrica