The Minister of Transportation, Mr. Chibuike Amaechi, yesterday, launched the e-ticketing platform of the Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC). Heassured Nigerians that government was determined to give the people best travel experience on all its train service network.
Amaechi, who gave this assurance at a virtual launch of the platform, said that about N900 million was committed to the project, describing it as another milestone for the Nigerian Railway Corporation, the Federal Ministry of Transportation and the government in general.
Noting that the project was a public private partnership, he said that it was a product of over three years of rigorous procurement process and due diligence involving the NRC, NITDA, which finally obtained approval from the Federal Executive Council.
“This project, which is a Public Private Partnership(PPP) is a product of over three years of rigorous procurement process and due diligence involving the NRC, NITDA and finally obtaining approval from the Federal Executive Council.
“Today marks the beginning of the automation of ticket sales in all our major stations on the Abuja, Kaduna train services. This is a total package that also includes access control which will be deployed subsequently.
“It is my belief that deploying the secured ticketing solution is in line with world best practices, and will enhance efficiency, save time and promote accountability while also reducing leakages andpromotingeconomicgrowth. Itismost suitableespecially atthisperiod of COVID-19 as it reduces physical interactions at the stations as passengers can buy their tickets at the comfort of their homes and offices through their phones,” he said.
The Minister appreciated the concessionaire, SecureID Limited, for believing in the project, pointing out that the various initiatives, which would be introduced by the concessionaire were aimed at making the entire rail network more passenger friendly.
He also said that government and the concessionaire entered into a 10-year agreement during which the vendor would have recouped its investment, estimated at about N900 million, after which the platform would be reverted to the Nigerian Railway Corporation. Amaechi further disclosed that he had directed the NRC Managing Director to commence the process of the Chinese loan repayment from the savings of the Corporation. SecureID Director, Mrs Joke Akinkugbe, thanked the Federal Government for partnering with the firm to develop the e-ticketing platform.