The Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) has announced an arrest of two suspects, Mansur shehu and Innocent Joseph, for allegedly vandalising and stealing an armoured cables belonging to Abuja Electricity Distribution Company(AEDC).
The Commandant of NSCDC, FCT Division,
Mr Patric Ukpan while addressing newsmen in Abuja disclosed that the suspects were arrested in Life camp area of Abuja by members of the vigilante in the community.
Mr Ukpan said, “We have in our custody two suspected vandals of AEDC cables, they were caught at Life camp area of Abuja.
“Where they went to vandalise the armored cable that connect electricity from the transformers to the users.
According to him, he said that the arrest of the suspected vandals was based on the tip off by the members of the community that apprehended the them.
“They were actually caught by the vigilantes and theresidents in that area,they made us to understand that they had some suspect intheir custody.
“But before we got there, they were beaten up by the residence of the place.“ So we rescued them from the place and we had to give themfirst aid treatment and will
prosecute them in court“.
Ukpan said that the two other persons who connived with the suspects were still at large, noting that frantic efforts were been made to apprehend them.
He said that further investigation on the matter wouldreveal other accomplices involved in the vandalism of electrical installationsin the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
“ For those in connivance , investigation is on, what wehave gathered from them will lead us nowto be on the tail on two other suspect that are at large.“And I can assure you within the shortest possible time weare going to apprehend them.
`Those are the people behind them and once we get them, wewill still let you know and we are going to prosecute them “.
He called on those involved in patronising stolen electrical cables to desist from suchacts as NSCDC was on the trail for suchpeople.
“ So we are going togo after them last week we paraded some of the them that we caught, this week, we are paradingthis one’s again .
“ Our men are everywhere to ensure that vandalism ofcritical infrastructures and national assets is eradicated “.
Reacting to their arrest, one of the suspect Mansur Shehu a welder said they were contacted by one Nura toembark on the nefarious act of vandalism and stealing of cables.
Mansur said that the money to be realised from the sale ofthe cable would be used to take care of their needs.
He said it was their first time of committing such a crime noting that efforts to get Nura their principal proved abortive.
The Head of Public Relations Officer and Media of AEDC, MrAhmed Shakarau said that , the vandalised armored were cables connected tothe transformers.He said the cables were designed to step-down electricity toits numerous customers in the life camp area.
He said that replacing and re-connecting the damaged cableswould cost over N6 million.He explained that the strong collaboration of AEDC withNSCDC in the area of protection of electrical installations was also designedto ensure that its customers get uninterrupted power supply.
He however expressed dismay over the activities of vandals,noting that their act constitutes a major sabotage in the electricity industry.This he said was frustrating AEDC efforts at distributingelectricity to its customers.
“However because of the activities of these kind ofvandals, you can see that no matter the effort we are making, some other peopleare there trying to sabotage our effort“.
He said that relationship with NSCDC was recording a lot ofprogress in the area of cubing criminal activities in the electricity industry.Shakarau called onthe members of the public to hand over all suspects to the security agenciesfor proper prosecution, instead of taking laws into their hands.
“Through our sensitisation, we told the community that once they suspect suspicious movement around those installations.
“They should quickly draw the attention of the NSCDC and those people will be charge to court.
“The beating might be because of the frustration that these vandals put the customers into.
“But we don’t encourage that communities take laws intotheir hands, we always advice, that once you arrest the suspect, hand them overto the security agents and they know how to handle them.
He said that it was the responsibility of the general publicto build a good society that would be beneficial all.
“Our advice to the public is that, even if you are notresidence in that community and you notice any suspicious movement aroundfacilities that delivers service to the public.
“ Your are duty bound to draw the attention of the security services to do what is required“.(NAN)