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The Acting Secretary of Federal Capital Territory’s Transport Secretariat, AbdulHamid Suleiman, says Abuja Light Rail is 84.33 per cent complete.

Mr. Suleiman made this known in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria, NAN, in Abuja on Tuesday.

“The total length of the completed double track as at today is 45.245 kilometres.’ ’He said the project was awarded on May 25, 2007 to China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation for the final construction of Lots 1 and 3.

He said the cost of the project was $841. 645 million with completion period of 48 months.

“This consisted of approximately 60.67 kilometres of standard gauge double railway track and associated permanent way within FCT.

“In Aug. 2012, due to deficiencies noticed in the estimations, the scope of the contract was varied to $823, 540 million for the final design and construction of Lots A1 and 3. “The project has attained about 84.33 per cent completion as at Dec. 2016,” he said.

The acting secretary stressed that the total length of double tracks of 45.245 kilometres has reached 98 per cent completion.

Mr. Suleiman said 12 stations had reached 75 per cent completion, 50 culverts 100 per cent completion, nine pedestrian overpasses had also reached 85 per cent completion.

He said 13 railway bridges were 100 per cent completed, 15 flyover bridges 80 per cent completed, locomotive and rolling stone stock depot also reached 85 per cent completion, communication 67 per cent and signalling at 87 per cent completion.

Mr. Suleiman said “the projected date of the completion of the project is Dec. 2017.

“The feasibility study and conceptual design for the remaining lots 4, 5 and 6 are under procurement.

“These lots are available for concession under a Design, Build and Operate (DBO) basis,” he said.

(Premium Times)

Despite the impact of recession on the Nigerian economy, the total funds under the Contributory Pension Scheme rose to N6.02tn at the end of November 2016.

This was disclosed in the update on the assets under management obtained by our correspondent from the National Pension Commission on Wednesday.

According to the commission, the funds rose from N4.6tn at the end of the 2014 financial period to N5.3tn in 2015.

The Director-General, PenCom, Mrs. Chinelo Anohu-Amazu, said the funds were being well managed, adding that no fraud had been recorded under the scheme.

She explained that the Pension Reform Act, 2004, which was the governing legislation of the CPS, was repealed and re-enacted in July 2014.

She said the new law re-enacted the copious provisions of the repealed 2004 Act, which included the establishment of the CPS as well as PenCom as the sole regulator and supervisor of pension matters in the country.

“Among other significant revisions, the PRA 2014 introduced some innovations in the pension system, instituted a stiffer regime of sanctions and penalties for infringements, ensured the upward review of the minimum rate of pension contribution in order to enhance the value of pension pay-outs, and expanded the coverage of private sector employees under the CPS,” Anohu-Amazu said.

The Chairman, Pension Fund Operators Association of Nigeria, Mr. Eguarehide Longe, said the pension funds were active in different investment portfolios. According to him, the bulk of the funds is invested in government bonds, which the government has invested some in infrastructure.

Ideally, he explained that money that had been borrowed for reasonably long-term should be used for reasonable long-term assets and not to fund recurrent expenditure.

(PUNCH)

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