From Suleiman Idris, Lagos
The Nigeria Railway Corporation NRC has said the current modernization programme to rehabilitate the workshops in its seven districts is geared toward creating about 1000 jobs upon completion.
The corporation said activities have since commenced on the workshops in Ebute Meta, Lagos, Ibadan, Zaria, Enugu, Bauchi and Kafanchan.
Spokesman for the NRC, David Ndakotsu told reporters that the workshops are being retooled and modernized to compliment the entire railway rehabilitation and modernization programme currently going on in phases.
He said “NRC is currently partnering with some foreign firms to rehabilitate its Pattern, Foundry and Smithy workshop to reduce to the barest minimum NRC dependence on foreign materials that have impact on rolling stock availability.
He explained that such materials include brake blocks, brake hangers, brake block pin, hand brakes check chains, draw bars, coil and leaf springs (Shock absorbers).
Ndakotsu told journalists that NRC is replacing old equipment with new modern technology and increased the production capacity through equipment modernization.
The impact of these installations is presently having impact on NRC operations in terms of turnaround time of maintenance of locomotives and rolling stocks. It said.
“All coaches and wagons are being repaired and overhauled at NRC major workshop with positive impact on locomotives, coaches wagons availability for inter-city, urban Mass Transit Train services and freight train services”.