By Peter Duru – Makurdi
Two suspected vandals were, Thursday, arrested by the Aliade Community youths for vandalizing a Jos Electricity Distribution Company, JED, Distribution Transformer located at the LGEA Primary School, Aliade in Gwer Local Government Area of Benue State.
According to a statement made available to Vanguard in Makurdi by the Head, Corporate Communications of JED, Dr. Adakole Elijah, one of the suspects, Peter Awanger who resides in Aliade was caught while vandalizing the Distribution Transformer at about 2am.
“Upon his arrest, the youths invited the traditional ruler of Aliade, Chief John Wunde to the scene of the incident before handing him over to the police for investigation and possible prosecution.
“Upon interrogation, the suspect who confessed vandalising a total of five Distribution Transformers within the locality disclosed that he had allegedly been selling the vandalised items such as armoured cables, feeder pillars units, spans of alluminum conductors among other parts to one Mr. Christian Odunwa in Makurdi.
“Based on his confession, the police took him to Makurdi where the said Odunwa was identified and promptly arrested.
“Both the suspected vandal and his buyer have been transferred to the Criminal Investigation Department, Police force headquarters in Makurdi for further action.
“Before the arrest of the vandal, staff of Jos Electricity Distribution Plc, have been accused by the youth in Aliade of being responsible for the incessant vandalisation of Distribution Transformers in the area.
“The accusation and suspicion led to the manhandling of some staff of the company by the youths even when the accused staff pleaded their innocence and insisted that the crimes were being committed by some unscrupulous elements in the community,” the statement read.
Also speaking on the development, the Managing Director of Jos Electricity Distribution Plc, Engr Hashim Ibrahim Bakori, who thanked the youth and the traditional ruler for protecting Electricity installations in their domain expressed optimism that the police would do the needful to serve as deterrent to others.
He urged members of the various communities in the company’s franchise states to emulate the youth and leadership of Aliade Community saying, ” injury to any Electricity installations should be viewed as injury to their entire communities.”