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PROBLEMS AND SOCIAL EFFECTS OF VANDALIZATION OF GOVERNMENT UTILITY INSTALLATIONS (A CASE STUDY OF NATIONAL ELECTRIC POWER AUTHORITY) N.E.P.A ENUGU DISTRICT
1.1 GENERAL BACKGROUND TO THE SUBJECT MATTER
Social amenities such as power generation, pipe borne water, telephone services and other utility installations are services which make life pleasant for the citizenry. The absence in the country is a serious matter in the social life of modern men. This accounts for the product management of establishment that handles these services in countries where of the citizenry is a priority.
Here inNigeria, it is difficult to fathom what position these services occupy in its scale of preference going by the epileptic manner in which they are rendered.
Vandalization and outright theft of public property here become the role rather than exception. The sad fact is that NEPA whose services are so crucial to the nation, is the most susceptible attacks from saboteurs. Its network of cables and other materials for electricity generation and distribution are basically over ground and are spread throughout the country making it not protected in most cases. As a result daring thieves strict anytime to sabotage electricity cables, circuits breakers, nuts, bolts, angle irons of transmission towers.
The national electric power, authority (NEPA) which is an establishment that handles the services of power generation, transmission, distribution and sales be briefly said its origin. Electricity power generation development inNigeriastarted towards the closing year of the last century when the first generating plant was installed in the city ofLagosin 1898. From this date onwards and until 1950, the pattern of electricity development was in the form of individual electricity undertaking set-up at various towns, some of them by the federal government under the jurisdiction of the public works department and some by the native authority and one or two large municipal authorities.
In 1950, in order to integrate power development and make it effectives, the government passed the electricity corporation ofNigeriaordinance No 15 of 1950. This ordinance brought under one control the electricity undertaking section of the public works department and all these undertakings which were under native authority or municipal ownership and control.
The electricity corporation ofNigeriausually referred to as “ECN” then become the statutory body responsible for generation transmission, distribution and sales of electricity to all consumers inNigeria.
The Niger Denis Authority was established by an Act of parliament in 1962. The authority was responsible for the construction and maintenance of dams and other on the River Nile and elsewhere, generating electricity by means of water power construction of the Kainji Dam which began March 1964 was on schedule in December 1968.
In September, 1969 the federal military government decided to merge the electricity corporation ofNigeria, and Niger Dams Authority into a simple body. A year later, a Canadian firm of consultants “Shavno limited” was appointed to look into the technical details of the merger. The report was submitted in November 1971.
By decree N0 24 of 29th June, 1972 (Which become effective on 1st April 1972) the electricity corporation of Nigeria (ECN) and Nigeria Dams Authority (NDA) were merged to become the national electric power authority (NEPA). The actual merger did not take place until 6th January, 1973 when a general manager was appointed. The decree stimulated that the authority is to develop and maintain an efficient co-coordinated and economical system of electricity supply for all part of the federation.
The affairs of the authority is min by mines members board whose members and chairman are appointed by the federal military government through the federal ministry of mines and power. The board is to lay down the policy of the authority and the chief executive sees to it that all decision of the board are efficiently executed.
The day to day managing of affairs lies in the hands of the general manager. It presents his activities are grouped under six functional divisions such headed by an assistant general manager. The divisions are administration, engineering commercial, operation and finance.
TheEnugudistrict of the authority which is the researcher case study is headed by a district manager.
Other sub-divisional heads include senior manager distribution, senior manager sales, senior manager accounts and senior manager administration.
1.2 PROBLEMS ASSOCIATED WITH THE SUBJECT MATTER
This study entitled “problem and social affects of vandalization of government utility installations” attempt top identity among other things, the problems of vandalization to the citizenry ofNigeria, to the establishment that handles electricity generation and distribution and to the government ofNigeria:
(a) That in recent years the rate of vandalization has increased;
(b) That many has lost their live in an attempt to carry out vandalization exercise.
(c) That the authority concerned has spent hugs sum of money in replacing those vandalized items,
(d) That many companies have closed down as a result of vandalization of electricity connections in their locations;
(e) That community development has been hampered due to incessant vandalization in tier areas.
(f) That apart from loss of comfort, resulting from vandalization, replacement coat which would run into hundred million of naira will be spent by the government.
(g) A prolonged power failure caused by vandalization means that most companies have to spend external money on generators in order to ensure a constant supply of light.
1.3 PROBLEMS THAT THE STUDY WILL BE CONCERNED WITH
The researcher during the course of this study encountered a lot of problems among which are:
(a) Time and financial constraints: Time and financial requirements for a large scale research were not available to the writer as at the time of study. It would have required a substantial outlay and lot of time course the whole NEPA Districts and other organization who has been experiencing these vandalization cases.
(b) Poor response to questionnaire: Most of the people served questionnaires left them blank. A cross interrogations revealed that many think information compute might be taken seriously Inspite of the fact that the research work is purely for academic purposes.
1.4 THE IMPORTANCE OF STUDYING THE AREA
In recent time,Enugumetropolis and other major urban and rural in the state and nation in general have rather increased activities of criminal who specialized in cannibalizing and stealing of public utilities.
It is gravely alarming that Inspite of the government’s sustained efforts at providing these basic facilities of the overall benefits of citizens, some evil-sanded people still relish in vandalizing them.
The aim of the study is to make critical analysis and identify problems and effects of vandalization and suggest measures to control it. The management and staff of national electric power authority will find this work useful in their operation on how to guide their installations. Also the government and the public who usually suffer the cost of replacing the vandalized items would still value this contribution as their guide in protecting further vandalization.
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