Vandalism: AEDC workers risk life jail, dismissal

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From Isaac Anumihe, Abuja

Following frequent vandalism of electricity installations across the country, Abuja Electricity Distribution Company (AEDC), yesterday threatened its workers with life imprisonment and dismissal if they are involved in the destruction of the company’s assets.

Making reference to the AEDC staff who was convicted and jailed in Kogi State for his involvement in a vandalism case, the AEDC Marketing Manager, Mr Donald Etim, warned that the company has zero tolerance for vandalism of its network assets irrespective of whether perpetrators of such actions are staff of AEDC or members of the general public.

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He disclosed further that disciplinary measures will take its full course which in this case is outright dismissal and loss of all employee benefits. He added that vandalism of electricity network infrastructure is a serious offence punishable with a Maximum Sentence of Life Imprisonment under Section 1(9) of the Miscellaneous Offences Act LFN 2004.

In a statement, Etim recalled that an Upper Sharia Court sitting in Minna, Niger State, handed a one-year jail term to one Abdulsalamad Abubakar, who was caught vandalising an AEDC substation in Paida junction of Minna.

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Abdulsalamad, who was apprehended in the criminal act on March 29, 2022 by an official of the Nigerian Police Force (NPF), was charged to court for contravening Sections 123 and 385 of the Sharia Penal Code law of Niger State, which prescribes five years’ imprisonment punishment for the offence. The convict had earlier been paraded before journalists by the NPF ahead of his arraignment in court, alongside numerous items found in his possession, which include: (1) 15-meter XLPE cable; (2) 300mm incomer cable and (3) 5 meters of 150mm.

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The manager assured the public that the management will not relent in its effort to tackle vandalism and other mischiefs on its network.

“We are committed to ensuring that apprehended vandals are tried in accordance with the law and made to face the consequences of their actions without any prejudice” he said.

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To curtail the menace of vandalism and energy theft on its distribution infrastructure, AEDC, he explained, will continue to partner with security agencies. He implored all members of the public to remain vigilant and report suspicious activities around power installations in their areas through its various contact channels.

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