The Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC) says it transported 260 passengers free daily with the new Standard Gauge from Lagos to Abeokuta.
Mr Jerry Oche, the District Manager of the corporation in Lagos, made this known on Tuesday in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos.
Oche said that the train has the capacity of transporting 130 passengers in a trip from Lagos to Abeokuta with about 14 crew members on board, making 144.
“The train has the capacity of carrying 144 people, 130 passengers and 14 crew on board.
“Currently, we are doing one to and fro service and as the time goes on, the coaches will be increased to accommodate more passengers.
‘’The standard gauge, when completed, will travel at 150 Kilometres per hour and Lagos-Ibadan is a 156-Kilometre journey,’’ he said.
According to him, the train departs Abeokuta by 7.00a.m and arrived Iju by 9.00a.m, while leaving Lagos by 4.00p.m and got to Abeokuta by 6.00p.m daily.
One of the passengers, Mrs Sumbo Alebiosu, who boarded the train from Abeokuta to Lagos, said that she was happy travelling with the train.
Alebiosu said that with the new standard gauge rail on ground, movement of goods and services would be easily transported from various communities, thereby encouraged trading and movement of services.
“In fact, I am very happy travelling with the train comfortably, this is what we have been expecting in this country.
“We thank President Muhammadu Buhari for the infrastructure and we hope the price will not be too high when it starts full operations,’’ she said.
NAN reports that the Alake of Egbaland, Oba Adedotun Aremu Gbadebo, on Friday said the new Lagos-Ibadan Standard Gauge rail line would improve the economy of Egbaland.
The monarch spoke during the official test run of the standard gauge from Iju, Lagos to Abeokuta on Friday, Feb. 8.
Also, Mr Rotimi Amaechi, the Minister of Transportation, had said that the Federal Government was not inaugurating the project yet, but test running it.
According to him, we just decided to put the train on the track to convey passengers for three months free of charge.