A Central Nigerian community, Kangang Phase II, located 10km west of the Plateau State Government House, Jos on Tuesday protested over ‘unlawful disconnection’ by electricity service providers in the State.

The community had reportedly purchased and donated a 500KVA electric transformer to the Jos Electricity Distribution Company to boost power supply in the area.

Weeks after the donation however, JEDPLC allegedly suspended power supply to the community.

MK Reporters gathers that the suspension followed brawls that broke out between local youths and operations staff of the company on routine tariff patrol in the area.

The brawls led to ‘threats to life,’ necessitating an indefinite suspension of power supply to the area, Acting Head of Corporate Communications of JED PLC, Mrs. Saratu Aliyu told journalists.

However, the community during its peaceful protest at the Dadin Kowa Area office of the company insisted the staff were ‘only’ stopped from disconnecting power lines in the community.

The action of the youths according to a spokesman of the community, Mr. Morgan Piwuna followed days of blackout in the area despite the purchase and donation of a transformer.

“Nobody was beaten, nobody was molested,” Mr. Piwuna said.

Mr. Piwuna, a lecturer in the University of Jos insisted the community was being punished for the sins of a few.

He said, “We wrote series of letters, including a letter of unconditional donation.

“We said that this thing (transformer), we have given to you is no longer ours but yours.

“Just fix it but till today, we have just been writing letters. They said they have approved the installation, they even went and arranged somewhere that they were going to install it but the thing is taking forever.

“The fallout of that delay I believe was the reason those youths were unruly to them.”

Most of those who participated in the protest, a catholic priest included were equally pained that the company’s reaction was affecting innocent persons in the community.

Fr. Matthew Sukada of the Church of Nativity, Kangang said he was up-to-date in his bill payments but had been deprived of electricity supply.

Likewise, Mr. Ibrahim Abdullahi, a resident of the community said “I have paid for my prepaid meter and have recharged my card but they have disconnected the whole community without taking this into cognizance.”

The impasse appears to have affected all aspects of life, including children’s health in the community.

Mrs. Duruoha Ijeoma, a mother in the community said, “Our children are suffering from cold and other health complications because we can’t use any of our home appliances,” she said.

She also cried that she could no longer store food ahead of the Christmas celebrations due to power failure.

Be that as it may, JEDPLC would ‘deprive’ the community of its services until a dialogue meeting was held between management of the company and stakeholders in the community, says to Mrs. Aliyu.

However, neither the company nor the community appears to be initiating the dialogue.

“Their community leaders know how to contact us,” said the JED’s spokesperson.
The Kangang community spokesperson equally said, “They know who the stakeholders are. They should have called us.”

The community had equally accused JEDPLC of demanding funds to installation their donated transformer but the service company through its communication boss says it was carrying out the installation in phases until the conflict broke out.

It equally accused the company of ‘high’ estimated billing, which the company has not denied.