By Oke Peter
Electricity supply in Delta State has been threatened following the vandalisation of six towers belonging to the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN).
In a statement issued in Abuja on Tuesday, General Manager, Public Affairs at TCN, Ndidi Mbah, said it would take another four weeks before vandalised towers would be put in order.
According to her, with the collapse of tower Number 61 on Delta-Benin line, TCN is now evacuating power through Delta — Sapele-Benin 330KV transmission line alone.
She explained that although the collapsed tower had not affected power evacuation, transmission lines redundancy had been affected until the second line would be restored.
Mbah said, “TCN hereby states that six power transmission towers along the Delta — Benin and Delta — Sapele — Benin 330kV transmission line routes have been vandalised and some of their tower members removed. This, coupled with the heavy rainfall of March 17th caused the collapse of tower Number 61 alone.
“As soon as the transmission line tripped, a lines’ patrol team was dispatched to investigate the cause and investigations revealed that tower Number 61 had collapsed and aluminium conductors from the tower were on the ground.
“The patrol team also discovered that tower members of five other towers including the tower directly opposite tower 61 on the Ughelli — Benin line route were missing.”
She said the Delta-Benin and Delta-Sapele-Benin 330kV transmission lines evacuated power from Transcorp Power Limited, Ughelli into the national grid, noting that TCN had been facing the challenge of repeated attacks by vandals on this axis since December 2018.
The company said it had also made a formal report to security operatives and to traditional rulers in the area, including the King of Okpeland and the Ovie of Oghara, who had held meetings with their subjects to address the menace but to no avail.
TCN reiterated the need for host communities to watch over electricity installations in their domains to forestall the destructive activities of vandals and also urge electricity customers nationwide to report any unusual activities around electrical installations to appropriate authorities.
The company lamented that the incident would cost TCN millions of naira to rebuild the collapsed tower and effect repairs on other towers with a fund that would have been plowed into its grid expansion programme.