The Federal Government says it will establish the Nigerian Railways and Host Communities Security Committees as part of measures to curb the incidence of armed attacks on railway infrastructure and passengers in the country.
The Minister of State for Transportation, Ademola Adegoroye disclosed this during his visit to the Tom Ikimi train station in the Igueben Local Government Area of Edo State which was attacked by gunmen last week Saturday.
A statement issued by the Director of Press and Public Relations in the ministry, Henshaw Ogubike said the government will take proactive measures to forestall train station attacks in the country and ensure safety of passengers and facilities.
Part of the measures he noted is the establishment of a collaborative initiative between the Nigerian Railway Corporation and the host communities to ensure that security is beefed up at the railway stations.
The minister, who solicited the cooperation of the host communities in this regard, maintained that it was in the best interest of the host communities to ensure that Federal Government investments and personnel are protected.
However, he allayed fears that the rail transport system will be shut down, saying that the Federal Government and the Nigeria Railway Corporation remain undeterred and will continue operations.
On the recent train attack, the minister said the identity of the attackers is yet to be ascertained but assured that security operatives are on the trail of the assailants to ensure they are brought to justice.
Meanwhile, the Managing Director, Nigeria Railway Corporation, Fidet Okhiria has said that trains on the Warri-Itakpe corridor would not be making a stop at the Tom Ikimi Train Station for the mean time.
Over 30 intending passengers were kidnapped on Saturday afternoon when gunmen attacked a train station in Igueben in Edo. Seven of the victims have been rescued, authorities said.
Saturday’s attack occurred months after terrorists attacked a moving train in Kaduna State on March 28, 2022. Scores of passengers were kidnapped and others killed in the dastard attack that attracted national and international outrage. The kidnapped victims were, however, freed with the last batch released in October 2022.