By E. Geedahgar Garsuah
“Complicated Law” Increasing Power Theft …Monie Captan Asserts
By E. Geedahgar Garsuah
MONROVIA: The Chief Executive Officer of the Liberia Electricity Corporation(CEO), has lamented what he calls the complicated nature of the Power Theft Act enacted into law by the 54th National Legislature.
Prof. Captan indicated that the law is posing serious bottom necks in the corporation’s quest to curb the growing menace of power theft in the country.
According to Mr. Monie Ralph Captan, as enacted into by the Legislature, the Power Theft Act is a second degree felony, something which he said, makes the prosecution process of alleged power thieves longer than expected.
“The power theft law is a very complicated one, it is not easy,” he said.
“If you are caught engaging in power theft, the crime is a second degree felony which means that we have to carrying you before a Grand Jury for you to be indicted, after you are indicted, then they have to carry you for jury trial,’ he added.
In apparent dissatisfaction over delay in prosecuting alleged power thieves, Captan pointed to a single case wherein it took nearly two years to conclude in court.
At the end of said case, he said, the alleged culprit was found not guilty.
“We tried one case like that, it took us two years, and we do not have control over the judicial process,” he conceded.
According to Captan, taking theses “bottlenecks” into consideration, LEC has initiated conversation with the Legislature with the intent to make some amendments to the law which will provide the entity the conduit to speedily prosecution individuals accused of involvement in power theft.
“So, we know that with our oversight, we cannot solve the power theft problem by carrying people to court and going for two or three years for one case. In this regards, we are discussing with the Legislature, and the intent is to improve on the law so that it can make it easier to prosecute people involved in power theft,” LEC boss asserted.
Meanwhile, Monie Captan has disclosed that all mechanisms are being set into motion for the electrification of the Robert International Airport Highway shortly.
According to Captan, the funds and materials are available and assurance from the constrictor puts the deadline for completion in October this year.
He added that the expansion of electricity to various suburbs of Montserrado County is on course.
Mr. Captan spoke to this reporter on the sideline of the National Elections Commission dialog with political parties on the implementation of the signed Memorandum of Understanding at a local hotel in Monrovia on Tuesday, July 4, 2023.