ICRC Issues OBC Compliance Certificate To Nigerian Railway, Expects N22bn Revenue In 4 Years

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By; MATTHEW UKACHUNWA, Lagos

The authority of Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC) has presented Outline Business Case (OBC) compliance certificate to the management of Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC) for the operation of electronic ticketing (e-ticketing) for Lagos-Ibadan and Itakpe-Warri Standard Gauge Railway train services.
Mr. Mike Ohiani, Acting Director-General of ICRC, presented the certificate to Engr. Fidet Okhiria, the Managing Director of NRC, at a ceremony held in Nigerian Railway Guest House, Lagos on Friday.
The Commission appreciated the effort of the Nigerian Railway Corporation in adopting Public-Private Partnership (PPP) procurement methodology for expanding and further developing Nigeria’s transport sector.
“The overall scope of both projects is to design, finance, build, operate and manage a secure ticketing solution system (hardware and software) for the passengers’ stations on the Lagos-Ibadan standard train service and Itakpe-Warri service,” Ohiani explained.
The projects are expected to cover, but not limited to the following: provision of electronic tickets (e-tickets) and manual tickets, provision of adequate infrastructural security, deployment of adequate maintenance regime, provision of adequate training regime as well as provision of value-for-money  throughout the life of the solution, ICRC authority clarified.
After presenting the certificate to the NRC managing director, the ICRC Ag. director-general declared: “The federal government is expected through NRC to generate 12.4 billion Naira within the four years for Lagos-Ibadan standard gauge rail service, and 9.6 billion Naira for Warri-Itakpe within the period under review.”
According to Ohiani, the presentation of the certificate showed that the “project is bankable.”
He pointed out that starting from Monday, 22nd November, they will go in for the next phase of the project. “We will secure a credible concessionaire that will manage the e-ticketing solution. We want to assure Nigerians that once this project is concluded, you will get efficient service. There will be improvement and no time wasting for the passenger. This we can guarantee you,” the ICRC chief remarked.
Engr. Okhiria in expression of satisfaction for the introduction of e-ticketing in the operation of train services, described the presentation of OBC compliance certificate as the celebration of another milestone.
According to him, the reward for operating electronic ticketing in railway passenger service in the country is huge.
He said: “We have started with a trial run of operation between Lagos-Ibadan and Itakpe-Warri, and it’s working very good. Sometime ago, we introduced e-ticketing to the Abuja-Kaduna train service, and the benefit of it is an eye opener. And apart from the benefit to the users, the Nigerian Railway Corporation and the government are also reaping from the e-ticketing.
“I’m proud to say that since the introduction of the e-ticketing the revenue has gone up drastically.”
Okhiria stressed that e-ticketing encourages passengers to use the train, and pointed out that if there were leakages, such leakages have been blocked, and that the fear of ticket racketeering has reduced.
He remarked that the presentation of the certificate on Friday was a ceremony marking the formal presentation which took place three weeks ago.
“We”, he highlighted, “went through several reviews, and we are happy today that they are officially presenting the Outline Business Case certificate that enable us to advertise the project of the e-ticketing secure to getting solution.”

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