Police parade 15 suspects for ‘stealing’ transformers

The police in Bayelsa State have arrested 15 persons who allegedly specialise in vandalising armoured cables, solar batteries, transformers and other electrical accessories for street lights.

Police Commissioner Mike Okoli, who paraded the suspects at the headquarters in Yenagoa on Monday, alleged that they had been sabotaging the efforts of the government in ensuring steady power supply to the public.

He alleged that on Sunday, about 8pm, Yakare Goodday, aged 41, a former employee of the Bayelsa State Government House, stole 12 solar batteries at the state-owned Golden Tulip Hotel in the Government House, Yenagoa.

The CP said 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, added that 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 about other suspects, CP Okoli said on December 15, about 7am, Suleiman Abdullahi, 32, Samaila Abubakar, 23, Gazali Shuabu, 18, David Kabir, 25, and 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 on.

The CP also said: “On December 14, about 5am, Bright Ibe, 55, Mrs Okechukwu Nwuebike, 52 and Justice Moses, 20, conspired with others 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, 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.

“The suspects have confessed to the crime. Investigation is on. They will soon be charged to court after investigations are concluded.”

He said most of the arrests were made possible due to the cooperation of the public.

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