72 Nigerian railway engineers trained in China return

The Federal Government has received 72 Nigerian graduates trained in China by the China Civil Engineering Construction Company.

The graduates were sponsored by CCECC as part of their corporate social responsibility to study Railway Engineering and other transportation-related courses.

The Director, Press and Public Relations, Transport Ministry, Olujimi Oyetomi, said this in a statement on Saturday.

At the reception, the Honourable Minister of Transportation, Senator Said Alkali, highlighted the government’s commitment to Indigenous participation in the railway industry, emphasizing the significance of the National Local Content Policy for Railway, developed in 2018.

This, according to the Minister, is borne out of the realisation of the enormous roles played by the rail transport subsector in the country, which further made the government introduce the “Advocacy for Enhanced Local Content in Nigeria’s Infrastructure Development based on Nigerian – Chinese Bi-lateral Agreements” and thereafter, directed the Federal Ministry of Transportation to look at various steps to ensure effective implementation of the policy.

He noted that the event marked a success of the Ministry’s initiatives.

“The outcome of today’s occasion depicts one of the success stories of the Ministry of Transportation’s initiative, as CCECC has accepted to train Nigerians in China as part of its Corporate Social Responsibility,” the statement read in part.

Alkali expressed optimism about the graduates’ contributions to the government’s ongoing efforts to modernize the railway sector. He mentioned the 25-year Railway Modernization Plan and the Ministry’s support for the policy through on-the-job training programs.

He further explained that the Ministry of Transportation supports the policy by engaging them as engineers and technicians through “On the job training programmes.”

Representing the Vice President, Ibrahim Hadeja, commended the graduates for their good behaviour and thanked CCECC for their role in developing Nigeria’s infrastructure and manpower. “This initiative is in line with President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s Renewed Hope Agenda,” he remarked, underscoring the importance of enhancing local content in Nigeria’s infrastructure development.

The Senate President, represented by Amos Yuhana said, “As a catalyst of change and transformation and a champion of progress, it is my distinct honour to welcome these extraordinary Nigerian graduates, who have returned to help us build the walls of our country.

“We have come to unveil the hidden treasures of these remarkable individuals who have traversed and chatted territories of learning in China and pushed the boundaries of human potential. They have returned to us now, not as mere travellers, but as professionals and with knowledge, skills, and burning desires to shape the destiny of our great nation.”

Minister Counsellor of the Embassy of China in Nigeria, Weng Yingqi, commended the graduates for returning to serve their country, emphasizing their role as exemplars for younger Nigerians. Use the knowledge and skills acquired to provide the backbone to accelerate the development of a great Nigeria he advised.

CCECC Chairman, Jason Zhang, expressed his company’s ongoing commitment to fostering cooperation between Nigeria and China. “This event is a further testament to greater cooperation between Nigeria and China, and we remain committed to deepening mutual understanding and bilateral relations,” he said.

The event culminated in the graduates signing employment contracts with CCECC, signifying their readiness to contribute to Nigeria’s railway

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