Activist calls for investigation of vandalised NIPP project in Kogi
A Human Right Activist, Chief Haruna Ahmed Osike has called on the Minister of Power, Alhaji Saleh Mamman to investigate the alleged vandalisation of the NIPP project at Usugwe community in Okehi LGA of Kogi State, where aluminium wire and service poles valued over N200 million was carted away by the staff of Okene area office of Abuja Electricity Distribution Company (AEDC).
Osike who made the call on Sunday at a press conference in Lokoja alleged that the Area Manager of AEDC Okene area office in Kogi state, Mr John Suleiman in conniver with Mr Iyabagi Danladi, a senior distribution manager at the same office vandalized over 2,000 meters of 150mm Aluminum conductor and over 25 high tension concrete poles at Usugwe community belonging to the NIPP project of the federal government.
He expressed worries that the transmission power station that cost the federal government several billions of naira has remained a source of vandalisation, appealing for adequate security at the site of the project.
Chief Osike lamented that the duo of John Suleiman and Iyabagi Danladi who ordered AEDC staff to vandalized the NIPP site rushed to Nigeria Police at Okehi division to report that it was thieves that carried out the vandalization.
“It behoves on us as a community to voice out whenever government property meant to alleviate the suffering Nigerians are being stolen by few individuals who believe that they are above the law.
“My petition over the vandalization of the site is already with the Commissioner of Police, Kogi state Mr Kassim Busari. I will not relent until the right things are done because the purpose of establishing the multi-billion naira step down power station was to tackle the epileptic power supply in the central senatorial district and we can not fold our arms while thieves carted away the equipment.
“Imagine the Area Manager of AEDC Okene area office, Mr John Suleiman, was boasting that the Nigeria Police is solidly behind them in whatever they do in central senatorial district of Kogi State.
“He also boasted that any complaints from Usugwe communities against them will not be entertained by the police because they have their support and backing.
“There are overwhelming evidence to support our claim. We have photograph which clearly shown AEDC staff and their operation equipment on the site and many people in the community are very willing to testify to this nefarious act against the nation,” he said.
Osike, who is an expert in electrical matter appealed to Minister of Power to take action, saying the power transmission station which cost the federal government over 10 billion naira has been suffering in the hands of vandals and AEDC staff.
“We are appealing to the minister to provide adequate security for the power station so that government effort will not be in vain,” Osike pleaded.
Reacting to the allegations, the Area Manager, Mr John Suleiman through a phone call, said the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria have sold the transmission power station, saying he has the right to rescue the property against vandalisation.
“AEDC is in charge of what is remaining at the station, so we went there to recovered the items. The police in Okehi division and the Administrator of the local government are aware of our operation at the station,” he said.