phcnThe Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) has decried the increasing spate of vandalism on electricity equipment, just as it nabbed four suspected vandals in Ikeja, Lagos.

The Senior Manager (Public Affairs), Ikeja Business Unit, Rotimi Afolayan, who confirmed the development to The Guardian, in a statement, said the Nigerian Police at Area ‘F’ in Ikeja collaborated with a private security outfit employed by the Residents Association of Government Reserved Area (GRA), to arrest another set of hoodlums who were suspected to be the brain behind the disturbing cases of incessant vandalism of PHCN distribution substations in Ikeja GRA and its environs.

According to Afolayan, the suspects, who were four in number, were found hiding in a parked commercial paragon bus at Sasegbon Street in GRA, Ikeja at about 01.15 hours apparently putting finishing touches to their criminal intent.

“They were promptly apprehended by the security team along with the commercial bus with registered number LXR 249 XD driven by one of them,” he said.

He identified the suspects to include; Ifeanyi Ezemenu (31) who was the driver, Chika Onyekwere (30); Kenneth Chukwuemeka (32); and Ebuka Nwankwo (27).

They were said to be in unlawful possession of two hack-saws, two customized torch lights usually used for nocturnal operations, a screw driver, one pincer (used for pulling out nails and other metal objects) and a cable jack (which is also used for pulling down and cutting electric cables).

Afolayan noted that they have since been taken to an Ikeja Magistrate’s Court presided over by Magistrate (Mrs.) Makanju charged with unlawful possession with intent to steal. They were later released on bail while the case was adjourned to November 26, 2013.

It would be recalled that GRA Ikeja has in recent time been a spectre of vandalism where 12 transformer substations were vandalized within a space of six months during which expensive electric cables and other substation materials were carted away.

Expressing joy over the arrest, the Ikeja Business Unit Manager, Lateef Olaleye, thanked the Police at Area ‘F’ and the GRA Security Committee anchored by Mr. Debo Collins for the spate of arrests made in recent time, recalling that two suspected vandals were equally arrested in the same GRA, Ikeja in mid August, this year.

He commended Mr. Debo Collins more especially for his tenacity of purpose in ensuring that the activities of vandals are curbed in the area and for his co-operation with the Business Unit, recommending that this noble acts should be emulated by other well-meaning customers of PHCN, Ikeja Business Unit.


Information from The Guardian was used in this report.