The Federal Government, through the Federal Ministry of Transportation (FMoT), has directed that the Abuja-Kaduna Train Service (AKTS) should resume on May 23.
The Deputy Director, Public Relations of the Nigeria Railway Corporation (NRC), Mr Yakub Mahmood, made this known in a statement issued in Lagos on Monday.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that a Kaduna-bound train from Abuja was attacked on March 28 by armed bandits, during which at least eight persons were killed and others kidnapped or missing.
The Nigerian Railway Corporation on March 29 suspended train operations along the Abuja-Kaduna route indefinitely.
Mahmood said that the corporation wished to inform its valued customers that additional security measures were being put in place at both the train stations and the track to ensure the safety of passengers onboard.
He said that such measures were not only for the Abuja-Kaduna Train Service (AKTS) but also for all the passenger train services, especially on the standard gauge railway lines.
“Consequently, the passengers are hereby enjoined to cooperate with the NRC in order to enjoy improved service delivery, safety and comfort.
“This is by patiently complying with additional measures that will surely be introduced for the safety of our passengers, such as requesting for passengers National Identification Numbers (NIN).
“The NIN is part of our internal security check; in addition, presentation of the following must be strictly complied with before boarding the train:
“A valid photo Identification Card (ID), reachable telephone number of Next of Kin (NOK) or close relative and an Online and offline purchase of tickets must contain the passenger’s individual profile or identification data,” he said.
Mahmood said that concerted effort to secure the safe release of the abducted passengers being held hostage by the terrorists was continuing out of the public domain for strategic security reasons.
He said that the government wished to assure the relatives of the abducted citizens still in captivity that the safe rescue of the passengers was a top priority.
The NRC official said that they should not misconstrue the resumption of train services as abandonment or nonchalant attitude of the government towards their plight.
He said that the federal government would never abdicate its responsibility in rescuing these valuable citizens, however, it assured of its resolve not to succumb to threats by any faceless group.
Mahmood appealed to customers for understanding and invited them to cooperate with their staff at the various train stations.
He urged passengers to desist from obtaining tickets through unauthorised sources.