Written by David LAWANI

Don’t slow us down, Amaechi charges NRC board members

The Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, has charged the newly inaugurated members of the Nigerian Railway Corporation, NRC, board ‘not to slow down’ the work of the agency for rail development in the country. 

Amaechi gave the charge during the inauguration of the Nigerian Railway Corporation, NRC, board led by Engr. Ibrahim Alhassan, in the ministry’s conference room, Abuja. 

"We should continue from where the last chairman stopped. With him and the Managing Director, NRC, we were able to effectively tackled critical problems such as, the water pipe borne, gas as well as sewage lines that were obstructing construction works on the Lagos axis of the Lagos-Ibadan railway project. Please, don’t slow us down”, he appealed. 

The minister reiterated that as construction works continue on the rail line, the track laying would be completed by end of May, 2019 and by the end of December 2019, appreciable progress of work would have been achieved up to Apapa seaport. 

He added that the congestion being experienced on daily basis at the Apapa ports are ‘man made’. 

Amaechi added “as governing board members, you are responsible for setting out the parastatal’s economic, financial, operational administrative policies in accordance with government policy directives aimed at assisting the corporation to achieve its mandate. You are also charged with the responsibilities for measuring performance against targets and introducing broad policy measures that will curtail any deviations to ensure that the targets are achieved”. 

While cautioning the board members not to involve themselves in the day-to-day management of the NRC, he enjoined them to engender harmonious working relationship with the management of the corporation in order to achieve the objectives of government. 

He further added “you are strictly advised to acquaint yourselves with relevant government circulars and directives on relationship of board with their agencies for a good harmonious working relationship. You are to note that in line with the guides to administrative procedures in the Federal Public Service (Chapter 7), the Minister may give to the Board of Directors directions of general character or relating generally to particular matters to the statutory body with regard to discharge of the board’s functions”. 

Meanwhile, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Sabiu Zakari in his address stated that section 5 of the constitution empowers the minister to appoint board members of the agency under the supervision of his ministry.   

The chairman of the newly inaugurated board, Engr. Ibrahim Alhassan, who led other members to the inauguration thanked the minister for his efforts at repositioning the rail sector, saying “it takes more than a gold braid to make a captain” by being the driving force behind the successes that has been so far recorded in the railway development in the country.



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