The Nigerian Railway Police Command in Enugu has arrested 14 persons in connection with alleged vandalism and theft of property belonging to the Nigerian Railway Corporation.
Mr Henry Njoku, the Area Commander in-charge of the Eastern District Police Area Command, confirmed the arrest to newsmen on Monday in Enugu.
Njoku said that the suspects included two policemen, who were allegedly aiding and shielding ths suspects.
He said that the activities of hoodlums had continued to hamper the operations of the corporation in virtually all its routes within the Eastern Corridor. The police boss said that the two policemen would face orderly room trial and risk dismissal, if found guilty.
He said that they would also be arraigned at the end of the trial along with the other 12 suspects. He said that the arrest was made possible through intelligence report and painstaking investigation in the past two months. He said that most of the suspects were arrested between midnight and 2 a.m. on September 15, while carrying out the act.
Njoku said that the vandals were caught stealing heavy irons of brake system control, wagon parts, wagon wheels, clips of rail slippers and rail slippers. Other items, he said, included armoured railway doors, sheets of zinc and rail cables, among others. He said that the command had recorded a lot of vandalism within Isiagu-Izuakoli-Mbaeke-Umuhia sections and Emene-Ogui-Ogbete sections of the Eastern Corridors.
Njoku said, “We are strategising to ensure that we put a stop to this growing trend of sabotage to the economy of the nation.
“The activities of the vandals are denying the people of this part of the country the opportunity to enjoy train services.” According to him, the property vandalised and stolen, including the ones recovered, runs into millions of dollars. Items allegedly recovered from the suspects included a jeep, five tricycles, two mini-buses and two trucks used for conveying the stolen items, four gas cylinders and a big cutter. NAN