Eko Electricity Distribution Company (EKEDC) has advised members of the public to desist from assaulting or preventing its staff from performing their lawful duties. In the same vein, the Company has vowed to go to the full extent of the law on equipment vandalism and pilferage.
This comes on the back of the arrest, police investigation, and arraignment of two individuals, one Julius John Adeyemi who beat up a staff of EKEDC while performing his duties in the Ijesha area of Surulere, Lagos while the other, Nwokocha Emmanuel, who was illegally found in a distribution substation premises of the Company at Tincan Port, Festac, Lagos, to steal contrary to section 406 of the criminal law of Lagos State of Nigeria 2011.
In a statement signed by General Manager, Corporate Communications of EKEDC, Babatunde Lasaki, who described both incidents as criminal and act of sabotage against the operations of the organization. He said “We condemn such callous acts against our staff who go around to discharge their lawful duties. We don’t condone such acts and we advise our customers to use the available channels of redress rather than resorting to self-help.”
Adeyemi was charged before Mrs Otitoloju of the Magistrate Court 3, Surulere for obstructing the staff from discharging his duties by removing his ladder from an electricity pole and subsequently landing him a blow. He pleaded not guilty to the charge and was granted bail in the sum of N200,000 with a surety with a tax clearance certificate and a verifiable address. Adeyemi was remanded in the Ikoyi facility of the Nigerian Correctional Service (NCS) pending the perfection of his bail conditions.
Nwokocha on the other hand was arraigned before the Magistrate Court 22, Apapa on a two-count charge of breaking and entry with intent to commit felony to wit stealing and illegal or unlawful purpose. He pleaded not guilty to both charges and was granted bail in the sum of #50,000 with two responsible sureties in like sum. Nwokocha was also remanded in the Kirikiri medium facility of the NCS till his bail conditions are fully met.
Lasaki also decried the act of vandalism and stealing of equipment procured by the company to supply electricity to customers. He said “These are the setbacks we experience in our quest to fulfill our commitment to ensuring zero downtime in electricity supply. We hereby call on our communities and other stakeholders to help safeguard electricity installations around them to put an end to this menace.”
He urged them to report suspected cases of vandalism to firstname.lastname@example.org, call 08000033333, or report to the nearest office or Police station.