Skip to main content
WARRAP - 25 Sep 2023

Four arrested for vandalizing MTN, Zain installations in Gogrial East

Authorities in Warrap State reported on Friday the apprehension of four individuals suspected of involvement in the destruction of MTN and Zain communication network cables within the Adiercin area of Toch North Payam in Gogrial East County. The suspects are presently in custody and are undergoing a comprehensive investigation.

Adiercin, a village located within the Abuok community of Gogrial East County, holds significance as the hometown of several SSPDF generals, including the late Gen. Salva Mathok Geng. According to official reports, the incident occurred during a rainy night the previous Wednesday when security personnel guarding the installations sought refuge in a nearby residence.

Maluach Lueth, the Gogrial East County Commissioner, shared insights with Radio Tamazuj on Saturday, shedding light on the ongoing investigation. Lueth stated that the destruction of the cables, which has severely impacted both security and the community’s access to essential services, was discovered when a security guard noticed the generator malfunctioned while taking shelter during the rain.

“It has come to the attention of security guards that the generator was not working as he took shelter at a nearby house while it was raining at night. So at dawn, the guard rushed to check the generator and got cables of both MTN and Zain communication networks burnt because they were built on one communications tower,” Lueth explained.

“The first suspect brought cartons and plastics in sacks and burned the cables. So in the morning of Thursday one suspect was arrested and the other three were also traced and arrested on Friday this week and all are still under police investigation,” he said.

Lueth further added that he promptly reported the incident to the Warrap State governor and the company owners. Immediate maintenance efforts were initiated, resulting in the restoration of both networks by Thursday. The community has since resumed utilizing these vital communication services.

“The communication network is good for security updates, and the users can also use the network to facilitate mobile-phone communication. The owners benefit as well because their businesses are thriving. So immediately I reported the incident to the governor and managers of Zain and MTN, so both networks were restored on Thursday, and the community is now using them,” he emphasized.

Commissioner Lueth noted that numerous smartphones were damaged during the incident, marking a troubling trend of recurring incidents in the area. He pointed out that some shops at the local market in the same vicinity had also fallen victim to arson.

In a separate statement, William Wol, Warrap State Minister for Information and Communication, confirmed the incident and urged the community to protect assets that serve the public interest. “An unidentified person has set six shops ablaze and destroyed telecommunication networks in the Adiercien area of Gogrial East County,” he stated.

Additionally, Minister Wol highlighted that similar incidents had occurred in Akoc Payam of Twic County, where another unknown individual tampered with communication networks.

“We don’t know the motives behind these separate incidents. It happened too in Akoc Payam of Twic County where unidentified persons did the same thing, but the state government has already stepped in and is conducting thorough investigations into these recurring incidents of vandalism targeting telecommunications companies and private businesses,” Minister Wol declared.