Big businesses and some suspected high ranking power thieves have come into trouble with the Liberia Electricity Corporation or LEC in its latest raid against those tapping power lines and allegedly causing the corporation to lost 33 percent of its power generation to criminality.
On Friday, 3 February, LEC Managing Director Mr. Foday Soko Sackor told journalists outside the Liberia National Police or LNP Headquarters on Capitol Hill that a key power theft suspect, Mr.Gabriel Kofi Abraham accused of allegedly supplying illegal current to hundreds of consumers had been arrested and turned over to police.
Mr. Sackor said the corporation has made over 400 arrests in connection to power theft, claiming to have caught major hotels here including Mamba Point Hotel, Ocean View Hotel and Monoprix Supermarket in power theft.
When contacted, Police Spokesman Sam Collins said he had not yet been briefed by investigators responsible for such matters, adding that he needed to talk with his people before commenting.
The LEC Chief Mr. Sackor had complained that the level of power theft executed against the company was hurting the economy on grounds that big businesses that should be paying taxes to boost revenue generations were allegedly caught stealing from the corporation while hundreds other consumers were paying money to the wrong individuals.
Citing an instance, Mr. Sackor suggested that suspect Abraham who is alleged to be supplying hundreds of consumers illegally along the Paynesville route has been collecting US$300 from each of his customers at the end of a month on LEC’s name, but such money does not reach the corporation.
Mr. Sackor said these alleged criminal activities being carried out by suspect Abraham and other power thieves have been causing the corporation to lost millions of dollars for months.
Upon completion of police investigation, Mr. Sackor said suspects will be taken to court and where those accused are found guilty; they would serve a year jail term in line with the law.
Mr. Sackor applauded citizens’ cooperation and the support of the media and the police that he says have been helping the LEC to combat power theft here.
While the LEC fights power theft, Mr. Sackor says customers are still being connected, announcing that an average 3000 customers get connected on a monthly basis.
But he said there would be reduction in tariff if the communities domore in helping to report theft or provide information that will leadto the arrest of anyone caught in stealing current.
Written by Winston W. Parley -Edited by Othello B. Garblah