Port Harcourt — A magistrate court sitting in Port Harcourt, the Rivers State capital, has slammed a 40-year-old ex-staff of the Port Harcourt Electricity Distribution, Kufre Udoh, with a four count charge bothering on fraud and fraudulent infractions.
The PHED ex-staff, who was earlier arrested by men of the River State Police Command for multiple infractions and fraudulent diversion of PHED’s funds, was eventually charged to court upon completion of police investigation.
Most notable amongst the counts contained in the charge sheet was the charge of obtaining financial rewards by false pretenses.
Head, Corporate Communications, PHED, Eno Emmanuel, said already the company was battling with many issues ranging from energy theft, vandalism, meter bypass, assault on staff by electricity consumers etc.
Emmanuel reiterated the zero-tolerance of the Managing Director of PHED, Dr Henry Ajagbawa, to any untoward activity targeted against the growth of the company.
He said: “Currently, the company is grappling with existential threats ranging from energy theft, vandalism, staff assault and meter tampering/bypass to unlawful invasion of distribution substations by miscreants in various communities.
“You will recall that upon assumption of office in January 2020, the Managing Director of PHED, Dr Henry Ajagbawa, sounded a note of warning to vandals and others to desist from any untoward activity or face the legal consequences for their actions.
“He further embarked on a tour of PHED’s franchise states comprising of Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, Cross River and Rivers States to sensitize the staff of PHED to stay true to the company’s core values and refrain from acts that are inimical to the growth of the company.
“Dr. Ajagbawa has made it clear that he has zero tolerance for theft, fraud and sundry misdemeanors that negatively impacts on the company and will employ every legal means to ensure that those engaged in such acts are brought to book to serve as a deterrent to others.
“PHED currently provides power to over 14 million people in four states namely: Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, Cross River and Rivers States.”