Angered by the details of a bill for a law against electricity theft before the Edo State House of Assembly, a coalition of the state Civil Societies, yesterday kicked against the bill. The activists who wore black attires during the action, carried placards with different inscriptions pelted the assembly complex named after the late natioalist, Chief Anthony Enahoro, with tomatoes oranges and other fruits.
The bill, christened Electricity Theft Offence, prescribes a special court for electricity consumers in the Benin Electricity Distribution Company (BEDC) who bypass meters and engage in illegal connection. Led by Leftist Omobude Agho, the protesters in their hundreds also in marched through the major streets of the Edo State capital before heading to Government House. Immediately the assembly staff sighted the protesters, they quickly locked all the gates leading to the entrance of the assembly complex.
Throughout the protest, neither Speaker Kabiru Adjoto nor and principal officer of the house bothered to address the angry demonstrators. Amidst tight security, the protesters chanted solidarity songs, vowing to resist the bill which Omobude insisted was anti-people, advising Obaseki not to sign the bill into law. Omobude insisted: “The issue of estimated billings, poor services and provision of metres must be addressed before any other issue. Edo people should not be seen to be doing the bidding of BEDC. This law is anti-people and must be rejected. BEDC is out to exploit Edo people and must be resisted.”