By Taiye Elebiyo-Edeni
Abuja – The Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC) has denied online sale of tickets on Abuja-Kaduna route.
Mr Fidet Okhiria, its Managing Director, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja on Friday that there was a website on the internet purportedly selling its online tickets.
He said it was a fraudulent site and advised Nigerians to shun the site.
“It is not true that we are selling tickets online. We are making efforts to let people know that we have not started. That is a fraudulent website.
“When we do it, we will tell people.
“We have been telling people that we require our e-ticketing to be very secure so that people cannot hack into it and dupe unsuspecting customers. We have not started and Nigerians should know that.
“So, I will appeal to them that they should not patronise a site for ticketing issues, we still sell our tickets in hard copies at the stations,” he said.
He said that the processing of introducing the e-ticket was ongoing, adding that it would be through Public-Private Partnership (PPP) arrangement which would go through due process.
Okhiria said that by the first quarter of 2019, all the processes would be over by Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC) for the automated tickets to commence.
“We have gone very far, we want to partner with private companies so that there will be reliability, it is presently with ICRC so that all due processes will be met, I hope by first quarter of 2019, we will finish with the processes.
“We are trying to do PPP arrangements, there are some infrastructure that need to be put in place so that the stations can have one entrance in and one out, respectively.
“It is only then that e-ticketing can make sense, not when all the stations are porous, they have to be a control exit point which will have to go through ICRC,” he said.
Mr Paschal Nnorli, the Manager, Abuja-Kaduna Train Service, also appealed to passengers to shun a fake message requesting them to buy tickets online.
He said that the message didn’t emanate from the NRC.
“The attention of management of the NRC has been drawn to a fake online message requesting prospective passengers on Abuja- Kaduna train route to buy or reserve tickets online by visiting a certain website.
“The general public, especially our esteemed passengers on Abuja-Kaduna Train Sevice (AKTS) are please advised not to patronise any of such calls as they did not emanate from the NRC.
“For clarity sake, NRC train tickets, for now, are obtainable in hard copies only from designated railway stations.
“Prospective passengers are therefore advised to buy their tickets only from NRC designated ticket offices and not through any other means,” he said.