Barely few months after two family member were jailed in Koko, Delta State, for stealing electricity cables, Benin Electricity Distribution Plc. (BEDC), has again won the war against electricity vandals as two transformer vandals, John Joshua, aged 25 and Yakubu Idris, aged 28, were apprehended by community members while they were vandalising a transformer located at off Oko Central Road, Benin City, Edo State.
According to a statement from BEDC, the two vandals caught in the act by members of the Idahagbon Community in Oko central area of Benin have been sentenced to six months imprisonment after arraignment on a two count charge of “malicious damage and stealing” at Oredo Magistrate Court before Chief Magistrate I.U. Iyoha (Mrs). BEDC reportedly followed up with the Police for proper investigation and necessary action following the arrest of the vandals by the Police with charge No MOR/133C/17. The two pleaded guilty and were sentenced to 6 months imprisonment or a fine of N70,000 each.
It will be recalled that efforts at curtailing the activities of electricity vandals in Benin Electricity Distribution Plc. (BEDC) network also yielded results last December as two persons, Friday Tega and Tega Ajaino were recently sentenced to 3 years 9 months and 2 years imprisonment respectively with hard labour.
The accused were convicted by a Magistrate Court, Koko near Sapele area of Delta state for vandalizing a BEDC 33KVA line.
The accused who were jailed without any option of fine were arrested and detained on Monday 19th, December, 2016 at Koko Divisional Police Station for committing the crime after cutting the wire of a tower in Presco Palm oil plantation situated in Koko town.
They were reported to have cut the 50mm earthing wire for grounding channel iron on 33kva line, in addition to 12 towers also vandalized by the criminals before they were arrested. These vandals were caught by the customers and community members in the area.
Meanwhile, the electrocution tragedy occurred at the Government Reserve Area (GRA) located at Itanla, along the Ondo/Aakure highway in the ancient community.
THISDAY gathered that the deceased until his death was the the official of the BEDC in charge of the area.
The incident attracted many residents of the area, who thronged the scene in their large number looking at the hanging body of the deceased on the pole while the motocyle that he rode to the place was packed under a mango tree near the building.
Similarly, officials from the BEDC in the city, came quickly when they had about the incident just as as police officers from the Igba Divisional Police Station also came to the scene.
Also members of the Licensed Electrical Contractor Association of Nigeria (LECAN) Ondo City branch came to see the situation.
Some residents of the area who spoke under condition of anonymity, described the incident as unfortunate, adding that the late BEDC officials and a father of three was a very familiar BEDC official in the area.
Speaking on the incident, the Business Manager of the Ondo Business District of BEDC, Mr. Chris Enuamaka said though he was on an official assignment outside the community, but he was briefed by the officials of the company.
He claimed that the victim who was a casual staff of the BEDC in the area was on an illegal duty to the area before the unfortunate incident occurred.
The remains of the deceased had been deposited at the mogue of the Ondo State Specialist Hospital.