The police in Bayelsa State have arrested 15 persons who specialise in vandalising armoured cables, solar batteries, transformers and other electrical accessories for street lights.
The state Commissioner of Police, Mr Mike Okoli, who paraded the suspects at the police headquarters in Yenagoa on Monday, said they had been sabotaging the efforts of the government in ensuring steady power supply to members of the public.
He said on Sunday that one Yakare Goodday, aged 41, a former employee with the Bayelsa State Government House, stole 12 solar batteries at the state-owned Golden Tulip Hotel in the Government House, Yenagoa.
The CP also said that the suspect had been arrested and the stolen items recovered from him.
But the suspect (Goodday), who did not deny the theft of the solar batteries, said hunger pushed him into stealing them to survive with his family.
The suspect, who said he was a drainage cleaner at the Government House, said the government had not paid him for five months and the means to survive had been extremely difficult hence he stole the solar batteries for sale.
Speaking on other suspects, CP Okoli said on December 15, 2020, about 7am, one Suleiman Abdullahi, 32, one Samaila Abubakar, 23, one Gazali Shuabu, 18, one David Kabir, 25, and one Usbau Umar, 23, allegedly stole armoured cables and other electrical accessories along Sani Abacus Expressway, Yenagoa.
He said the stolen items had been recovered and investigation was ongoing. “On December 14, about 5am, one Bright Ibe, 55, Mrs Okechukwu Nwuebike, 52 and Justice Moses, 20, conspired with others now at large and stole 25 KVA transformer at Gabriel Okara Cultural Centre and 50 KVA transformer on Hospital Road, Yenagoa.
“The suspects were caught in the act and the items were recovered. Investigation is ongoing.
“On November 17, about 5am, one Tarilade Okosu, aged 23, was arrested with a high tension crossbars at Ogbogoro community, Yenagoa. He confessed that he stole the items from Ayama community in Southern Ijaw Local Government Area of the state.
“All the suspects have confessed to the crime. Investigation is ongoing and they will soon be charged to court after Investigations are concluded.” He said.