The Management of Benin Electricity Distribution Plc. (BEDC) has commended Ovbiogie Community in Ekiadolor area of Benin, Edo State for apprehending electricity vandals stressing that vandalism and other forms of electrical thefts were serious threats to the country’s sustainability and economic growth. The management said vandalism impacts negatively on revenue, as funds that should be used for electrical infrastructure projects are being used to repair damaged installations and also stolen equipment.

It will be recalled that the vigilante members of Ovbiogie community had assisted BEDC in apprehending vandals who vandalized 2 transformers in the community

At the appreciation ceremony hosted by BEDC, the Chief State Head, Edo State, Engr. Fidelis Obishai commended the community for its vigilance over BEDC network, saying the fight against electricity vandals “is a collective responsibility that can only be sustained through increased partnership.” Engr. Obishai, who spoke on behalf of MD/CEO, Mrs. Funke Osibodu noted that increasing vandalism will force the company to spend money meant to improve electricity infrastructure to repair or replace damaged and stolen installations.

“If a pole is damaged, wires are carted away and transformers are vandalized, the community remains in darkness. It behoves on all of us to ensure that these equipment are protected for our common good”, he said.

Obishai pointed out that electricity generated in the country was not sufficient to give 24 hours power supply to all customers thereby causing load shedding to enable equitable distribution of power so as to satisfy electrical needs of all classes of customers, adding that “BEDC is only allocated 9% of what is generated from the national grid daily, still some communities were deprived of their share because of those who vandalize transformers and other installations.

The CSH while appreciating the effort of Ovbogie Community, presented them with cartons of energy saving bulbs saying it will help them pay less for power usage and also enjoined other communities to emulate and take ownership of BEDC assets in their various localities, “since they are the direct users of these facilities.”