The Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC’s) has given approval to the Nigerian Railways Corporation( NRC) to begin the process of selecting e-ticketing service providers for the Lagos-Ibadan and Warri-Itakpe standard gauge rail services.
The ICRC on Sunday issued NRC an Outline Business Certificate to enable it process online ticket sales solution providers for the routes under a Public-Private Partnership procurement.
Presenting the certification, ICRC Acting Director, Mike Ohiani, said NRC could now proceed to the concessionaire procurement phase for approval by the Federal Executive Council
Ohiani said in the past, tickets were sold in a physical store, or delivered to the respective railway ticket train station for purchase, adding that recent times, ticket vending machines have surfaced and have been improving the efficiency and productivity of train service.
According to him, technological advancement in recent years has led to the emergence of mobile ticketing or E-ticketing.The overall scope of both projects is to design, finance, operate, build, operate and manage a secure ticketing solution system (Hardware and Software) for the passengers’ stations on the Lagos – Ibadan Standard Train Service and the Warri-Itakpe standard Train Service.
He said that the introduction of e-ticketing would reduce cost operation, reduce handling cash and multiple fare media types as well as minimising human involvement onboard fare transactions.
Mr Ohiani said that e-ticketing would help in the collection of information, assist in the improvement of service to passengers and provide a platform for fare transactions.
NRC Managing Director, Fidet Okhiria, said that the concessionaire would operate the e-ticketing with NRC staff and hand over to them with new replacement of technology after 10 years of operation.
He commended ICRC for issuing NRC with the business certificate, adding that overbooking and lack of seats would be a thing of the past, with the introduction of e-ticketing on Lagos and Warri railways.