PHCN workers Dissent members’ ‘Arrest’ | Independent Newspapers Limited
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PHCN workers Dissent members’ ‘Arrest’

Posted: Jun 3, 2016 at 2:06 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

Members of National Union of Electricity Employees (NUEE) yesterday stormed the residence of the Deputy Speaker of the Kaduna State House of Assembly, John Audu, protesting what they described as “illegal arrest, detention and torture” of two of their members.

Leader of the protest, Assistant General Secretary (North West) of NUEE, Comrade Moses Amedu said Danjuma Stephen and Olabode Olabundiri were at Audu’s house on official duties when they were arrested.

“We are in the house of the Kaduna State Deputy Speaker, John Audu, who yesterday got our members arrested. Two of them, Comrades Danjuma Stephen and Olabode Olabundiri, were on official duty at Audu’s house in Mahuta, Sabon Tasha, and upon discovering they were debtors, disconnected the house from power supply.

“But the deputy speaker, instead of settling his bills, got the men arrested. He closed down the billing office and subjected our members to torture. For over four hours, they were detained at Sabon Tassha police station, answering questions, stripped of everything they had, and kept in the cell. They were released five hours later.

“Our question is “Is the deputy speaker exempted from paying electricity bills? Secondly, the house is a new building and so we are not sure it was properly documented because he did not pass through any legal means of electrifying the new premises. The house was built, but it was wired by illegal electricians and connected to the national grid,” Amedu explained.

But Audu, who spoke through the Engineer who handled the construction of the building, Ahmadu Illiya, said the PHCN workers were out to tarnish his image.

“I am the Engineer that built this house. Yesterday, a friend who works with the electricity company wanted to know why power was disconnected from the house and I asked Audu what the problem was. He said he was not sure what the electricity staffs were doing to his light because his payment was up to date.

“He showed me the receipts and they were up to date, but the PHCN workers did not only disconnect the light, they went away with the cables.

“They should not tarnish the image of a man who means well for the people. We approached the electricity company for two phase meters, but they said it has to be three phase meters. So are we to run the three phase meters or the company? I don’t think there should be these clashes. We are doing direct payment pending when the meters are provided, and we have paid up till April 2016,” Illiya said.