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The South and Middle Belt Forum, on Friday, faulted the $1bn railway project announced by the Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, with a call on Nigerians to “reject this squandering of our resources on another country.”
The organisation alleged that the resources would be used by the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd), to fund his ethno-religious sensibilities outside the country.
The SMBF expressed these views in a statement by Chief Edwin Clark (South-South), Chief Ayo Adebanjo (South-West), Chief John Nwodo (South-East), and Dr Pogu Bitrus (Middle Belt).
The statement reads, “The announcement of the building of a $1.9bn rail from Kano to Niger Republic is one more reason that Gen Muhammadu Buhari’s commitment to Nigeria is no more than the resources he can take from the country to fund his ethno-religious sensibilities outside the country.
“Committing such an amount to another country at a time Nigerians are being punished with atrocious prices of petroleum and electricity prices confirms that Mr President is loyal to a different civilisation, which he is abusing his leadership of Nigeria to promote.
“This project is being promoted at a time the Calabar-Lagos rail that is of great economic importance has been abandoned. We wonder what explanation the Minister of Transportation will have to give to the people of the South-South for abandoning such a project, while committing to the wasteful project to Niger.
“It is not lost on us the absolute lack of integrity of this government in lying to us that the rail is being constructed to the border when Maradi is over one hour to the border of Niger with Nigeria.”
In the same vein, the National Christian Elders Forum, led by a former Minister of Defence, Gen Theophilus Danjuma (retd), described as insensitive but absurd the approval of $1.9bn by the Federal Executive Council to construct a rail line from Kano to Niger Republic.
While describing it as “a questionable project,” the Chairman of NCEF, Elder Solomon Asemota (SAN), in a statement, said the only logical reason for the “absurdity” remained that Nigeria had been regarded as a colony by the Fulani oligarchs in power.
Source: The Punch