Mr Abdu Mohammed, Managing Director of the Jos Electricity Distribution Plc. (JED) says many Nigerians still view Distribution Companies (DISCOS) as the old Nigeria Electricity Power Authority (NEPA).
Mohammed stated this when he visited Justice David Mann and Mr Albert Ogbole, the Chief Judge of Plateau and Director of the Department of Security Services (DSS) in the state, respectively.
The managing director decried the spate of vandalisation of the company’s facilities and energy theft by customers.
Mohammed, therefore, solicited the cooperation and support of the judiciary and DSS to tackle energy crimes in its areas of operation.
He lamented the dangers posed by the energy plunders and solicited the support of the chief judge to expedite action on cases regarding vandalism and energy thefts brought before its courts.
“Vandalism leads to willful destruction of the company assets just as it also obliterates the economic and social life of the affected communities.
“It is, therefore, a crime against society, and so, we should collectively fight to stamp it out, hence your maximum cooperation is required.
“Even though the energy sector has gone through a transformation in consonance with the privatisation policy of the federal government majority of members of the public still view our company as the old NEPA,” he said.
To ensure effective synergy, the managing director promised to organise workshops and seminars for judicial officers in the company’s franchise states to keep them abreast of the legal and regulatory framework of the reform power sector.
Responding, Mann said that the judiciary in the state had been doing its best in the area of justice adjudication.
The judge said that he had initiated some reforms that would expedite the dispensation of justice, which would benefit the company.
“Presently, there are measures put in place to ensure that justice is expedited; we are in the process of digitising our operations in the state.
“We are establishing a small claims court in the state to care of cases that have to do with N5 million claims.
“This will lead to the decongestion of the courts for more cases to be heard by the high courts.
“It will help ease of doing business and I am sure that your organisation will be one of those that will benefit from this,” Mann said.
On his part, Ogbole, the Director of DSS, thanked Mohammed for the visit and commended the company for a stable power supply in the state.
He pledged that DSS would do all within its mandate to support the company in its quest to tackle the menace of vandalism and energy theft.