The police say they arrested Dino Melaye, senator representing Kogi west senatorial district, after he was granted bail in court as a result of pending charges against him. Melaye was arrested on Wednesday after he was granted bail in a magistrate court in Abuja where he was charged with attempted suicide, criminal conspiracy and causing […]. More at:
Many erupted in laughter at a high court in Abuja on Thursday when Dino Melaye, senator representing Kogi west, displayed a bottle of coke, tissue paper, toothbrush and toothpaste to journalists after he was arraigned.
The federal government arraigned Melaye on a two-count charge.
The senator was accused of deliberately giving false information to the police to frame Edward David, chief of staff of Yahaya Bello, governor of Kogi state, for an attempted murder on his life.
Melaye was also accused of making a false statement of facts in a phone conversation with Mohammed Abubakar, son of the late Abubakar Audu, former governor of Kogi, with the intention of harming the reputation of Bello’s chief of staff.
Melaye was granted bail in the sum of N100,000 by Olasumbo Goodluck, the judge handling the matter.
But speaking with journalists after the bail, Melaye said he came prepared in case he was not granted bail.
“I came prepared… just in case the judge didn’t grant me bail, I am ready to go to prison,” Melaye said.
His trial will commence on May 16.
In a comical twist, Melaye got his dream fulfilled as the Police later arrested him and put him in custody immediately he left the court halls.
The police say they arrested Dino Melaye, after he was granted bail in court as a result of pending charges against him. Melaye was arrested on Wednesday after he was granted bail in a magistrate court in Abuja where he was charged with attempted suicide, and criminal conspiracy.
However, based on the results announced by Professor Ukertor Gabriel Moti, the Declaration Officer for the exercise held in the senatorial district on Saturday, only 18,742 of the 189,870 of the signatories to the petition for the Senator’s recall were verified by INEC. Although some hoodlums attacked the office of the Independent National Electoral Commission(INEC) in Mopamuro Local Government of Kogi state on Saturday.
One of the INEC staff, who spoke on condition of anonymity, alleged that the hoodlums were political thugs who accompanied an aide of the governor to the INEC office to challenge the outcome of the verification exercise as it did not favour them. The hijack of the result sheets at the council, was one of the low points of the exercise to recall Senator Dino Melaye, who represents Kogi West in the Senate. The verification of the signatures calling for his recall was marred by low voters turn out at many polling units.
Reports shows that between 70- 80 per cent of the petitioners in all the 10 wards in the council failed to come out to verify their signatures. The exercise which lasted for six hours from 8am to 2pm, was very peaceful, free, fair and credible as the scanty petitioners were seeing verifying their signature with low turnout. In Ward 01 (Units: 001; 002; 003) , Ward 03 (Units: 01; 02; and some other units in other wards, only 20 to 25 per cent of the petitioners were recorded as counted by the poll officers.
However, one polling unit each in Ward 06 and 07, Orokere and Takete-Ide respectively recorded 40 and 45 per cent turnout while only one polling unit recorded 90 per cent turnout (103 out of 110 petitioners.
Many voters expressed their displeasure over the appearance of their names on the recall register, saying they were shocked because they never at anytime signed any document for Melaye’s recall. One of the voters at Ward 06, unit 04, Mrs Funmilayo Ojo, said that she was surprised to see her name among the petitioners, saying “it shall not be well with the perpetrators of such act”
DAILY POST which followed the Senate delegation learnt that Senator representing Kogi West Senatorial district was in a state of coma as at Wednesday morning.
Senators on the delegation are the deputy Senate leader, Bala Ibn’Nallah, Francis Alimekhena, Emmanuel Bwacha.
The National Trauma Unit of the hospital was heavily guarded by stern looking operatives of SARS.
The leader of SARS was identified as O. F. Onche who insisted that Senators cannot seeDino Melaye which according to him, was an order from above.
“Senator Bala Na’Allah: We are Senators and we are here to see Senator Dino.”
“SARS leader: I know you. You cannot see him now. It is an instruction.”
“Bala Na’Allah: Instructions from above?”
SARS leader: I said it is an instruction, may be you can see the medical director..”
The delegation left without seeing Dino.
Meanwhile, on their way back to the National Assembly, another senator intervened and they were called back.
Dino to be paraded with other arrested criminals by Kogi State Police Command today
SENATOR Dino Melaye, who was arrested Tuesday morning by operatives of the Nigeria Police drawn from its Special Anti-Robbery Squad, SARS, is at present being moved to Lokoja. Senator Dino Melaye the embattled senator representing Kogi West Senatorial District under the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, is expected to be paraded later this evening among other hardened criminals who implicated him in the crime that necessitated his arrest.
SW learnt that the senator who was taken into SARS detention facility, located opposite the old Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN junction along the Area 1 expressway, Abuja, was moved out around 12 noon Yesterday in police vehicle heavily manned by SARS operatives. The detention facility where hardened criminals arrested for theft, murder, cultism and other criminal acts are being kept.
Media sources claimed that the parade of Melaye and other criminal suspects among them the re-arrested suspects who had escaped from prison cell, is to be conducted by the Deputy Force Public Relations Officer, Aremu Adediran, a Deputy Superintendent of Police, DSP. He is to carry out the parade assignment on behalf of his immediate boss, Jimoh Moshood, an Assistant Commissioner of Police, ACP, who is currently in China on a course.
Our source said before being moved out into the waiting vehicle for onward journey to his home state, Melaye was handcuffed to avoid possible escape from the security operatives. Attempts for inquiry from the Force Headquarters’ deputy image maker were not successful as he refused to pick calls made to his known telephone lines. Recall that the men of the Nigeria Police Force reportedly forcefully carried out the arrest of Melaye without arrest warrant or court order in the early hours of Tuesday. Initial attempts were made by the police to arrest the senator after immigration officials disembarked him from a flight to Morocco on Monday morning. Following his release after three hours detention at the immigration office at the airport, the lawmaker’s house was besieged by over 80 armed police men from Monday noon until the early hours of Tuesday.
Earlier in the morning, Senator Dino Melaye as a law-abiding citizen voluntarily submitted himself to the operatives of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) who had laid siege to his private residence since around 3.35pm of Monday, April 23, 2018.
He, along with his lawyers and personal aides, was driven in his private car to the SARS office in Guzape district of Abuja, sandwiched among the numerous police vehicles earleir deployed to his house.
For the avoidance of doubt, he had never evaded police invitation before now because there was none extended to him in the first place. Rather, what the Police FPRO, Mr. Jimoh Moshood, had been doing was to summon the Senator through media briefings, a practice which is unconventional.
But given the media hype the whole saga had generated expecially his unwarranted travails in the hands of Immigration officials at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Aiport in Abuja on Monday, April 23 and the attendant but dramatic police siege to his private residence thereafter, where family members and political associates were subjected to traumatic experience for hours, it became necessary for Senator Dino Melaye to end the drama, hence his choice of appearing before the police today.
Later on, they moved to take him to Lokoja in Kogi State. The public will vividly recall that this same case involving Senator Dino Melaye had already been transferred to Abuja by the Chief Justice of the Federal High Court after Senator Melaye expressed worry about his safety in Lokoja. Now, the question is: why will they want to forcefully take him to Lokoja? The Senator believes they are doing the Kogi Governor’s bidding in order to assassinate him.
Contrary to online reports about jumping out of a moving police vehicle, nothing could be farther from the truth as such insinuation is practically impossible for a man saddled between gun-wielding policemen. Today’s incident was a last resort by Senator Dino Melaye in order to foil attempt to kidnap him and kill him by agents of Kogi State governor in connivance with the Police.
Special Adviser (Media) to
Senator Dino Melaye
National Assembly Complex
…Victims mostly women and children …Tiv leaders cry for help By Peter Duru, Makurdi
In what is becoming a weekly sordid ritual, 61 persons were, over the weekend, killed in separate dastardly incidents in Benue and Zamfara States. Whereas 31persons, mostly women and children, lost their lives in six communities of Guma Local Government Area of Benue State in the hands of suspected herdsmen, another 30 were massacred in Maru Local Government Area of Zamfara State, by suspected gunmen. Ortom Sunday Vanguard gathered that 25 persons were killed in coordinated attacks on Tse-Abi, Tse-Ginde, Tse-Peviv, Tse-Ikyo, Agenke and Gbenke communities of Unzughul, Saghev Council Ward in Guma; the killings were said to have commenced from late Friday to the early hours of Saturday. 82 houses were razed by the herdsmen during their orgy of killings in the affected areas of Benue State. Still in Benue, a bloody clash of rival political and cult groups in Otukpo Local Government Area of the state, accounted for six of the deceased 31.
An eye witness to the Zamfara killings, Mr Shuaibu Kabaro, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Maru, that the suspected gunmen attacked the two communities and the incident was immediately reported to the security agents. He said three of the bandits were arrested by security agents following the prompt report of the incident to the security personnel. Benue killings According to a resident of one of the affected communities, some of the invaders who stormed the communities were dressed in military fatigue and armed with sophisticated weapons. “They came around 10pm and started shooting sporadically, killing people and razing houses and hurts in the communities. “People ran for their lives but many, especially women and children, could not escape the rage of the assailants. While some were butchered, several others were gunned down in cold blood – including two children of a Makurdi-based pastor who traveled home for holidays.
“After the attack, the invaders as usual retreated. It is a sorry sight in the communities, scores sustained injuries, many of the houses are still burning as I speak with you. “The invaders also looted the valuables and food of their helpless victims.” The Benue State Government, in a statement through the Chief Press Secretary, CPS, to the Governor, Mr. Terver Akase confirmed the attack. The statement read in part, “I can confirm that herdsmen last night and earlier today invaded Saghev Ward of Guma Local Gvernment Area, killing many innocent persons. “10 corpses have so far been recovered with many still missing and scores injured.
The armed herdsmen also burnt numerous houses, shops and other property in the area. “This mindless attack was unprovoked, and we urge security agencies to arrest the herdsmen behind the killings for prosecution.” Meanwhile, the Mdzough U Tiv, MUT, a socio-cultural organisation of Tiv speaking people in the country has again alleged that the governor of a neighbouring state, had provided a safe haven for militant herdsmen from where they launch attacks on defenseless Tiv indigenes of both Nasarawa and Benue States. In a statement signed by the President General of MUT, Chief Edward Ujege, and the Secretary General, Dr. Boniface Ukende, lamented that the said governor had done nothing to check the relentless attacks.
The statement read, “MUT can authoritatively reveal that between 15th, 19th of April 2018, the herdsmen invaded Tiv villages in Awe, Obi, Keana, Dome and Lafia Local Government Areas of Nasarawa State and killed over 75 Tiv people and ransacked villages and displaced over 100,000 Tiv people. “It can be recalled that in January, 2018, it was made public that herdsmen were harbored in TUNGA settlement in Awe Local Government Area of Nasarawa State. This was later confirmed by security agents when their kingpin was arrested in Tunga.
“Currently we are informed that the herdsmen that recently attacked and killed over 75 Tiv people are accommodated in Adudu in Obi Local Government Area of Nasarawa State. They have made Adudu their second base from where they spring to unleash terror on defenseless indigenous Tiv people of Nasarawa and Benue States. “In consequence therefore, the herdsmen have taken over and occupied Tiv houses unchecked and where they cannot for want of number they set such abandoned properties ablaze.
“We call on all well meaning Nigerians, the National Assembly, National Human Rights Commission and International Community to urgently wade into this issue.” Meanwhile there were conflicting accounts on the murder of six persons in Otukpo local government at the weekend. A source in the town allegedly linked the crisis leading to the murder of the victims to the caucus meeting of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Benue South, held in the town. Another account linked the killings to a rival bloody cult fight which also left scores injured. In a statement exonerating his party from the crisis, the APC Director of Publicity, Peter Apeh, told Sunday Vanguard on phone that there were no fracas, not to talk of killing during the caucus meeting of the party in Benue South last Friday contrary to speculations that the incumbent state chairman, Abba Yaro, brought in thugs to manhandle his political opponents. Apeh, however, alleged that “The thing was said to have started from Thursday. I heard that boys, rival cult boys were moving from street to street killing people. It was not like it happened at the venue of our meeting. “I also heard rumours that it was the state chairman that instigated it. How can somebody that has been endorsed instigate such? Abba Yaro is such a man that will not stoop low to indulge in such activity. If there was anything of such, it might have been caused by the an aspirant.” When contacted, the Benue state Police Public Relations Officer, Assistant Superintendent, ASP, Moses Yamu, said he was yet to get details of the incidents.
30 killed again in Zamfara
The eye witness to the Zamfara massacre said, the gunmen, in turn went and mobilised more gang members and returned in multitude to carry out the attack which left about 30 dead and many others injured in the two communities. The Maru Local Government Council Chairman, Alhaji Salisu Dangulbi, and the Police Public Relations Officer in the state, DSP Mohammed Shehu, both confirmed the killings. According to them, many of the villagers deserted their homes for fear of further attacks which has now become the modus operandi of the gunmen. The duo said, with the presence of security personnel now in the area however, many of the villagers have started to return home. The PPRO further explained that units of mobile police working with the military and other security agents were immediately mobilised to the affected areas, adding that peace and normalcy have since been restored. The police spokesman, however, said that the actual number of those killed was still being worked on and “until this is done, l cannot give you actual figure at the moment”.
Edward Onoja, chief of staff to Yahaya Bello, governor of Kogi state, says some people are bent on tarnishing his image.
Onoja said this while reacting to reports which said he led soldiers to break into an office.
He position was contained in a suit he filed at a high court in Kogi state. Onoja named Michael Elombah, publisher of elombah.com, and two others as defendants in the suit.
Onoja is seeking a sum of N100 million as damages for alleged defamation by the defendants.
“The allegation is in the extreme because nothing as maliciously reported and published by the defendants took place. That Onoja laboured assiduously over the years and made great sacrifices to build his character and career,” court papers read.
“That Onoja is a distinctive geologist, prudent treasury manager, banker par excellence and a savvy oil and bank professional.
“That Onoja by his past endeavours and present employment is a well-known community leader, a successful politician across his native Igala land, particularly Olamaboro local government area where he hails from, and a ranking official in Kogi state government.
“That consequent upon the defendants’ libelous and malicious publication, Onoja has been inundated with calls and contacts from within and outside Nigeria by all manner of people who denounced the chief of staff as rascal, lawless and unfit for public office.
“That the defendants’ publication was really meant to defame him.”
Thereafter, S. O. Otu, judge handling the case, ordered the defendants to appear before him within 30 days beginning from April 10.
Also, Onoja dismissed a report that he and his family were involved in a car crash as “fake news”.
Bello’s chief of staff said that he was not given an opportunity to refute the story by some media houses who ran the story.
“Fake news is also becoming a tool of trade to preach manipulating lies with the intent of spreading hatred against humanity, causing ethnic unrest, and worst of all, inciting inexcusable violence to boot,” he said.
Wale Odunsi, a deputy editor at Daily Post, had accused Onoja of threatening to kill him over a report.