From Chuma Austin, Enugu
Police in Nnewi, Anambra State, have arrested three youths for allegedly vandalizing electricity equipment belonging to Enugu Electricity Distribution Company (EEDC)
The suspects were initially picked up at Akwa-Ukwu, Nnewi by members of vigilante group while they were attempting to vandalize a 300KVA distribution substation, property of the electricity company.
The trio identified as Uchenna Ncheta, an indigene of Ebonyi State; Chinedu Eze, who hail from Ihiala, Anambra State and Chuks Michael, an indigene of Abia State were immediately handed over to the Orba Police Division and subsequently transferred to the State Criminal Investigation Department (CID), Awka, Anambra State for further interrogation and possible prosecution.
Disclosing this to newsmen in Enugu on Wednesday, the Head, Corporate Communications, EEDC, Emeka Ezeh, expressed worry over the continued attack of EEDC installations in the South-East by some unscrupulous elements, noting that these activities undermine the efforts being made by the company to improve its service quality to customers.
Ezeh told reporters that in the course of interrogation, it was gathered that the trio were suspected to have masterminded the attack on Ibollo 500KVA distribution substation at Oraifite, Anambra State late March.
He lamented that since the beginning of this year, the rate of vandalism across their network had been on the rise, pointing out that over 120 distribution substations were attacked, and items worth millions of Naira vandalised. “Some of the items usually vandalised included armoured cables, intermediate cables, feeder pillars units, transformer oil, bare conductors, etc”, he added.
According to him, “Vandalism still remains a cog in the wheel of progress and constitutes a very big distraction to our organisation as we continuously channel resources ought to be used for other meaningful projects to replace vandalised items”
In a related development, a security man attached to Welder Estate, Agu-Awka, Awka Anambra State, identified as Adams Taiwo, was charged to court for attacking a staff of EEDC, inflicting machete cut on his arms and maliciously vandalising a Toyota Hilux truck belonging to EEDC.
“The man damaged the front windscreen, four side windscreen and back traffic light of the vehicle” the EEDC” he said.
Ezeh stated that Adams was arraigned at Amawbia Magistrate Court, Anambra State, before Magistrate Doris Udensi who read the three count charges against him.
He was subsequently remanded in police custody pending when his bail conditions are met; with the matter adjourned for hearing on May 4, this year.