The Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, NSCDC, in Kwara State has arrested a former Territorial Manager of the Nigerian Telecommunications Limited, Nitel,Mr Benedict Uwulekhue, 62, alongside eleven others over allegations of vandalism, criminal conspiracy and illegal sale of the telecommunication company’s equipment.
The State Commandant of the NSCDC, Mr Pedro Ideba, while parading the suspects said their officers were offered a bribe of N140,000 by the ex-Nitel staff and two of his accomplices to stop criminal investigation of their alleged offences.
He added that some equipment like vandalised high tension cables, electricity transformer and containerised transmitter, were allegedly sold to two suspected buyers in the Ilorin metropolis.
He recalled that the defunct Nitel Company in the state capital still had some telecommunication equipment in its premises, saying that the arrested suspects include three security men on guard at the company.
The NSCDC boss, who said the buyers of the Nitel equipment could not produce document to authenticate ownership of the items, added that it was during further investigation into one of the buyers’ house that two industrial electricity generating plants belonging to government were discovered.
He stated that the security men attached to the Nitel premises had confessed to the crime, adding that all the accused persons would be arraigned in court after conclusion of investigation.
The former Nitel Manager, Mr Uwulekhue, while maintaining his innocence bluntly refused to give details of what transpired saying his actions was done on good faith.
One of the alleged buyer, Chukwudi Mba, identified as auto electrical dealer, said he bought the items from auction sale organised by NATCOM in April this year, adding that he had documents.
The industrial electricity generator he said was bought at N650, 000 each and the containerised Nitel transmitter and high tension cables at N700, 000.