By Frank Oshanugor
Two guards employed by a private security company that operates as Stevenson Security Services Nigerian Limited with a branch office at Agbor, Delta State have conspired and stolen a generating set with current street value of about N5million from Emosylv Nigeria Limited (Ewere Cooking Gas) where they were posted to work as guards.
The two guards Lucky Ndidi and Lucky Nwaedozia were said to have been posted to work at the Gas company located along Benin – Asaba Road, Agbor, but in the night of the incident only one was said to be on duty when the thieves came with truck and freight lifter to remove the Perkins Engine Sound Proof Generator Model P222.
The generator with Serial Number GV51792R034976D was bought for N2.8million from JMG Limited, Lagos on April 4, 2019 and installed to power the operational facilities in the Gas company.
Our investigation revealed that the owners of the private security company who signed a contractual agreement with the management of the Gas company to provide 24-hour security services may not have entered the business relationship with good intentions as the operational name of the company does not exist as a guard company in the records of the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corp (NSCDC).
The owners of the company have been operating in the public space with the name Stevenson Security Services Nigerian Limited as evident in some documents sighted by our reporter.
A verification of the true status of the company at NSCDC headquarters, Abuja through the office of the Head, Public Relations, revealed that what is officially registered and licensed is Stevenson Guards Nigeria Limited and not Stevenson Security Services Nigerian Limited with annual license renewal date falling due on August 21.
When contacted on phone sequel to this finding in Abuja, the Managing Director of the security company, Mr. Jacob Ikpade told our reporter that his company was actually licensed by NSCDC as Stevenson Guards Nigeria Limited and not Stevenson Security Services Nigerian Limited.
He explained that he began the company as Stevenson Security Services Nigerian Limited but that NSCDC objected to it and approved Stevenson Guards Nigeria Limited.
However, he was reluctant to change to the officially approved and licensed name.
Responding to the allegation of his guards’ involvement in the theft of his client’s generator, Ikpade admitted that two guards were posted to work at the premises but did not know why one of them absented himself from duty without his knowledge.
While explaining that the guards were reporting directly to his supervisors, Ikpade could not provide evidence that there was thorough background check on the guards prior to their engagement even though he claimed to have the names of the guards’ guarantors.
Further investigation revealed that those who came to remove the generator had easy access as nothing was broken down to suggest that they forcefully entered.
Moreso, the thieves had ample time to uninstall the heavy duty generator and lifted it into the truck they came with, without the guard on duty calling for help.
The guard on duty claimed that the thieves tied both his hands and legs with rope soon as they gained entry into the fenced premises. If he was not in conspiracy with the thieves, the guard on duty had the time to alert his supervisors or police on phone as the thieves were purportedly making effort to gain entry yet he did not do so.
It was gathered that soon as the owners of the Gas company learnt of the incident, they alerted the police at Agbor who made some arrests.
The two guards were subsequently interrogated but later released on bail.
The matter was later transferred to the Delta State Police Command headquarters, Asaba for further investigation.
When contacted on phone, the Command’s Public Relations Officer, DSP Bright Edafe said he was not aware of any such incident but asked for time to enable him check with the relevant units of the Command with a view to ascertaining the level of investigation and further action.
Efforts to speak with the authorities of the Delta State Command of the NSCDC on the matter proved abortive.
The State Command of the Corp ought to know the true registered identities of all existing guard companies in the State in line with the records of such companies at the NSCDC headquarters where operating licenses are issued.