July 24, (THEWILL) – An industrialist in Aba, the commercial nerve centre of Abia State, has commended the youths in various local government areas of the state for taking up the challenge of vandalism against electricity infrastructure which has been rising in recent times in the state reputed for indigenous manufacturing.
In a statement Friday in Aba, Engineer Joseph Onyekachi stated that the youths who have been assisting the security agencies in the state, including security staff of Geometric Power which generates and supplies electricity in nine of the 17 local government areas in the state, “are buoyed by sheer patriotism and commitment to the common good to protect the electricity infrastructure in our dear state and work in conjunction with the police and other security and intelligence agencies to safeguard these critical assets”.
The youth, noted Engineer Onyekachi who is also the secretary of the Southeast Zone of the Electricity Consumers Association of Nigeria, “commendably recognise that those stealing copper wires and armoured cables of distribution transformers, among other critical components of the electric power supply chain, are compromising their own future
“These vandals make it difficult for capable and hardworking youth to get employment or business opportunities; our youths don’t want to be economic parasites”.
Onyekachi argued the youths would get a better chance to progress in life only when “there is affordable, constant and quality electricity supply, as Professor Bart Nnaji, the erstwhile Minister of Power, and his tireless team at Geometric Power are trying to do now.
“No nation can develop without electricity”.
The industrialist contended that the action of those he described as patriotic youths shows that there is, “indeed, a future for our country despite the crass irresponsibility and hooliganism of a handful of Nigerian youths, including those stealing energy and those vandalizing critical infrastructure across the nation”.
Onyekachi, however, warned against the tendency by some youths to take the law into their hands by lynching distribution transformer parts out of deep anger.
He stated that “jungle justice is no option”, adding that “both the police and the public need to know from arrested vandals their partners in crime like their sponsors, so that appropriate measures can be taken against them.”
He observed that though the electric power infrastructure in a majority of local government areas in Abia State now belong to Geometric Power and Aba Power, “it should be considered a public asset which belongs to you and me.
“There is no business or organisation or individual excluded from enjoying power supply and using it to advance himself or herself or to promote the common good.”
Engr Onyekachi assured the public that the cost of doing business in Abia Ste would decline drastically when the 181 megawatt Geometric Power Plant in Osisiome Industrial Layout, Aba, is commissioned later in the year.
“Not only will the prices of goods and services in Abia State decline, the quality of life as well as living standards will shoot up considerably”.