The Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), Benue Command, on Saturday paraded six suspects for allegedly vandalising the rail line at Lafia Road, near the NYSC farm in Makurdi.
The Commandant of NSCDC in the state, Sule Okeji told newsmen that the suspects identified as Shaibu Sule, Sani Ibrahim, Sagir Abubakar, Alhaji Usman, Danlami Awai, and Abdulgafar Tijani, were apprehended by NSCDC officers on Nov 3, 2020.
Okeji said that the suspects were arrested while conveying about 300 pieces of railway slippers, nuts and bolts in a blue truck with registration number GBK 312 ZY.
The commandant said that during the operation, one Anura, who was the main suspect who hired the truck, the truck driver and one loader escaped, but those arrested would be charged to court after the conclusion of investigations.
The suspects, who confessed to their participation in loading the truck with the vandalised rail line components, however, denied vandalising the rail line.
Okeji stressed that the arrests were made following the intensified surveillance of NSCDC on the critical national infrastructure and assets, adding that the vandalism of rail line components amounted to economic sabotage.
“The damage the vandals have caused to the economy is colossal because right now, no train can pass through Benue to Enugu, thereby stopping business activities for those who use rail transport.
“I am warning all vandals and other criminal elements to steer clear of Benue because the Benue Command of NSCDC will not rest in its resolve to carry out the corps’ mandate of protecting critical national infrastructure and assets,” he added.