Melaye has Never Evaded Invitation, says Aide
Gideon Ayodele, Special Adviser to Senator Dino Melaye, has said that the Senator “had never evaded police invitation before now because there was none extended to him in the first place.”
He stated this in a press statement released yesterday, against the backdrop of recent developments involving Senator Melaye and security operatives.
Last Monday, Senator Melaye was arrested and temporarily detained by Immigration officers while at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport Abuja, on his way to Morocco for an official assignment. The officers claimed that they held him, based on a directive from the police. Senator Dino Melaye represents Kogi West in the Senate.
He reportedly “escaped” from that arrest, causing armed policemen to lay siege to his residence in Maitama, Abuja. Thereafter, Senator Melaye is said to have voluntarily handed himself over to the Police.
But he reportedly jumped out of the police Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) vehicle that was conveying him, when he suspected that he was being taken to Lokoja, capital of Kogi State, instead of a court in Abuja. He sustained injuries in that process and has been admitted at the National Hospital in Abuja, for medication.
Senator Melaye had earlier alleged that Mr Yahaya Bello, Governor of Kogi State, is working in concert with the Police to “destroy him”.
The police have denied that claim. They have accused him of illegal possession of firearms which he allegedly supplied to two criminal suspects.
Also, Governor Audu has advised him to leave him out of his problems with the police.
Vanguard newspaper reports that Mr Jimoh Moshood, an Assistant Commissioner of Police and Force Public Relations Officer, stated that men believed to be working for Senator Melaye got informed of the police movement yesterday and proceeded to waylay the vehicle carrying the Senator, around Area 1 in Abuja.
Mr Moshood reportedly said that Senator Melaye bolted away when the scene became rowdy. The police have re-arrested him at the hospital.
Before this week’s dramatic events, the police had claimed that Senator Melaye has been declining their invitation.
That background forms the basis of the statement released by Gideon Ayodele. It is titled: “Today’s Incident Involving Senator Dino Melaye: A Last Resort”.
Read details below:
“Sequel to the avalanche of calls by well-meaning Nigerians and supporters of Senator Dino Melaye for enquiries about the well-being and safety of the Senator and against the backdrop of baseless rumours being spread on the social media, we are constrained to make the record straight as follows:
“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 earlier 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 especially his unwarranted travails in the hands of Immigration officials at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport 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, 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 foil attempt to kidnap him and kill him by agents of Kogi State governor in connivance with the Police.”
Meanwhile, Channels Television reported this afternoon that Senator Bukola Saraki, Senate President, has led a delegation of other Senators to visit Senator Melaye at the hospital.
The report states that: “The senators arrived the hospital around 1.29 p.m. in three buses shortly after suspending plenary for the same purpose.”
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