DisCos condemn military assault on AEDC staff

The umbrella body of the eleven electricity distribution companies, the Association of Nigerian Electricity Distributors (ANED) has condemned the alleged assault on some staff of the Abuja Electricity Distribution Company (AEDC).

It was reacting to a report in which four staff of the Disco were allegedly detained and handed over to soldiers for torture by an army officer, Major General HD Tafida.

In a statement issued by the Executive Director for Research and Advocacy, Sunday Oduntan on Friday, it stated that the Disco’s staff had gone to deliver a demand letter (AEDC/DMU/12-21/118) to the army officer at his Gwarinpa residence in Abuja over his indebtedness to the service provider.

However, it explained that the soldiers had arrested them presumably on the orders of the General and took them to Mambilla Barracks where they were said to have been tortured.

While describing the treatment as “unjustifiable” and “cruel”, it said, “The staff were merely going about their legitimate duties. They had done nothing wrong. They merely went to serve a letter. How that led to soldiers being sent to look for them is beyond us.

“Why in God’s name will you have a grown person flogged for going about his normal, legitimate assignment?

“You have an obligation to pay for the power you have consumed. If you were paying, no one will serve you a letter of demand. Being an Army General does not exempt you from paying for electricity consumed.”

It called for the intervention of the Nigerian Army, led by Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen Farouk Yahaya to ensure justice is done,

“The Nigerian Army as an organisation is one of our biggest customers across the country so I can say for a fact that this kind of conduct is not the way the Army relates with our members. I do not know why he will choose to deliberately embarrass the Chief of Army Staff and the entire military like this.

“Despite the fact that our power sector has its issues, the daily technical and commercial efforts of these men and women which ensure that the power sector’s relationship with the end-users is managed in a way that keeps the economy running is very, very significant. This is not the first incident of physical attacks on Disco staff,” it stated.

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