On Friday night, some enraged youths raided the Afam Power Station belonging to the Transmission Company of Nigeria(TCN), shutting it down, thereby causing a total blackout in the entirety of Rivers State.
The incident was confirmed by Mrs Chioma Aninwe, the acting Manager, Corporate Communications, Port Harcourt Electricity Distribution Company (PHED).
She said the youths demanded 24 hours unhindered power supply to their communities in Oyibo Local Government Area of Rivers.
“The youths known as Oyibo Youths, shutdown Afam Transmission lines around 21:04 p.m. on Friday night, thereby, throwing the entire Port Harcourt and Rivers state into darkness.”
“The youth took laws into their hands and marched in their numbers to the transmission station, forcing the operators to shut down supply without observing safety measures. This ugly incident has become the order of the day due to their acclaimed inadequate power supply to their communities,” she said.
Aninwe threw light on the electricity shortages being experienced in the area, saying it was due to load shedding introduced to accommodate every customer. She said that several meetings have been held between the PHED and the leadership of Oyibo communities to enlighten them on the load allocation formula from the National Grid.
“PHED also informed them of the need for the company to apply systematic load shedding in order to accommodate all its customers. However, all our attempts have proved futile as the youth insisted on 24-hour supply, negating our efforts at ensuring equitable distribution of supply to customers.”
“PHED condemns in its entirety the frequent shutdown of Afam power station, and hereby, draws the attention of law enforcement agencies and the Rivers government. We urge the authorities to come to our aid and put a final stop to this frequent disruption of power distribution to customers at the slightest power challenge in the state,” she pleaded.