By Stanley Nwanosike
Enugu, – Enugu Electricity Distribution Company (EEDC) has handed over three assailants who attacked its men on official duty to the police.
Its spokesman, Mr Emeka Ezeh, told newsmen in Enugu on Sunday that the assaulted officials went to disconnect supply to some energy thieves on Friday, but were attacked by the cheats who resisted the move.
He said the assailants had been using power at their residence at Abakpa Nike area of Enugu for years without paying any bill and even extended power supply to an adjoining building.
“When EEDC officials visited the premises, the occupants claimed they had a prepaid meter, an indication that they should not be disturbed with disconnection.
“The EEDC officials carefully inspected the building and discovered there was no such prepaid meter and thereafter requested for evidence of payment, which was not provided.
“It was then that they carried out the disconnection, and as was customary, they were about handing over the disconnection notice to the assailants when they were attacked.
“Also on Nov. 18, EEDC officials were attacked at Imeama Iwollo in Ezeagu Local Government Area as they arrived at a residence to disconnect supply because the occupant had owed huge sums of money.
“The debtor resisted the disconnection, ran to his shrine and brought out a knife to attack the EEDC officials before he was apprehended by the police,’’ Ezeh said.
He decried attacks on the company’s officials when they go out to disconnect power supply to debtors or to electricity thieves and said that the company would not sit back idly.
“We shall make sure that perpetrators are arrested and prosecuted accordingly,’’’ he stressed.
Ezeh noted that attacks on the company’s officials ranged from beating, dragging them down from ladders, seizure of ladders, release of dogs on the officials and hostage taking to damage of operational vehicles.
He said energy theft and refusal to pay for power consumed were the major challenges the company had been facing.
“EEDC appeals to customers to regard the payment of energy bills as their obligation and it is the only way the power sector can be efficient and be sustainable,” Ezeh said. (NAN)