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Orion under investigation for alleged vandalism of Umeme transformers

Transformers with no copper-wire sited at Orion Transformers and Electrics Limited backyard. Courtesy photo

Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Police in Namanve industrial park are investigating the officials of Orion Transformers and Electrics Limited for allegedly vandalizing transformers belonging to power distributor, Umeme limited.

Orion Transformers and Electrics Limited specializes in the supply, repair and export of industrial automation equipment. It is one of the companies contracted by Umeme to repair its transformers.

However, Umeme claims to have discovered a warehouse which Orion officials have been using to vandalize their transformers. Over 50 transformers of 300 and 500 KVA were found immersed in oil in the warehouse.

Aaron Tibezinda, the head of security and investigations in Umeme says they are working with security to get to the bottom of the matter. Another Umeme official told URN on condition of anonymity that Orion has been conniving with some Umeme officials to write off some transformers.

“We have taken some good time following up on this matter. What these people do is remove copper bindings and oil from transformers that can easily be repaired. They sell some of the copper at a cost of about Shillings 10 million from a transformer of 500 KVA,” he notes.

Our reporter saw several transformers at the site without the copper wires. However, Liu Hanlin, the manager of Orion Transformers and Electrics has dismissed the allegations saying the contested warehouse is an extension of their workshop. He however couldn’t explain why the copper wires were missing from the transformers.

Darlington Eiru, the Officer-in-Charge Namanve police station says they are closely monitoring the warehouse until investigations are complete.

Orion Transformers and Electrics Limited came into the limelight recently when it was fronted by the Education and Sports Ministry to supply radio receivers to complement the long-distance learning program.

However, the more than Shillings 300 billion suffered a setback when MPs visited the company premises and only found two radio sets delivered by DHL from China.



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