…leads senators on solidarity visit to hospital
The Senate President, Dr Bukola Saraki yesterday said the senate was trying to resolve the crisis involving the embattled Kogi West Senator, Dino Melaye.
Saraki, who led a senate delegation to visit Melaye at the National made the disclosure while speaking with newsmen during a visit to the embattled Senator at the National Hospital, Abuja.
Shehu Sani, a senator from Kaduna, and Ahmad Lawan, senate majority leader, were among the senators who accompanied Saraki.
The Senate President disclosed that Melaye was stable but still in the intensive care.
“After the sitting at the senate today, we resolved to come here because over 24 hours we have not heard of know about the state of senator Dino. We’ve just seen him and he is in intensive care. He’s stable for now,” Saraki said.
“We know he hasn’t eaten for the last 24 hours, we are trying to resolve that. He’s on fluids and he’s being seen by cardiologists, all specialists. As you know, he has other (health) issues, he’s asthmatic. We are a bit concerned but for now we thank God he’s stable.
“We want to thank the management of the National, the professional and medical staff for what they’ve been able to do. As for now, he’s stable, he’s being monitored. We’ll continue to pray for him that he continues to recover. He’s not in handcuff.”
About 40 senators accompanied Saraki to the hospital but only seven of them were able to meet with Melaye at the trauma centre of the hospital.
Melaye, is being treated of injuries he sustained after he allegedly jumped off a police vehicle while being transported to Lokoja, Kogi State to face criminal charges. The senator was accused of supplying guns to some murder suspects, an allegation the lawmaker denied.
The lawmaker was initially admitted at the intensive care unit of Zankli hospital opposite the Ministry of Power, Works and Housing, Mabushi in Abuja before he was transferred by men of the Nigeria Police to the National Hospital.
The senator is being interrogated by the police in connection to a murder case and other criminal activities.
Meanwhile, the senate has summoned the Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, over Melaye’s issue.
…Senate adjourns to see colleague
The senate yesterday, adjourned plenary over the case of senator representing Kogi west.Dino Melaye,
Bala Na’Allah, deputy leader of the senate, who was asked to find out the condition of Melaye said only him and two of his colleague were allowed to see Melaye.
“We went to the National Hospital this morning where Senator Dino was alleged to have been kept from yesterday and we confirmed that he was brought yesterday at about 11 pm,” he said.
“We spoke to the doctor who is in charge of the ICU and they assured us that they are doing everything humanly possible to stabilise him but he is in the intensive care unit. We tried as much as possible to see him but we were refused access. The instruction that was left by the police is that only Senator Abu Ibrahim and Senator Kaka are permitted to see him,” he said.
“As at the time we were leaving the hospital, an issue that the feeding of Dino has become an issue because the police are not willing to feed him because of the situation. They are afraid. The hospital has equally expressed reservations about feeding Senator Dino.
“A medical personnel from the police who is working together with the trauma surgeon handling Dino told us that whoever is bringing the food for Dino must taste it. There is also a report that Dino has asthma so a chest surgeon was the one seeing him while we were leaving.
“Lastly, there was an insistence to remove him from the National hospital but the management told them that an undertaking must be signed that whatever happens will be on them. That is what is keeping Dino at the National Hospital till date because nobody is willing to sign.”
…why I escaped from Police – Melaye
The senator representing Kogi West, Dino Melaye has said that he jumped down from a moving police vehicle, which resulted in his hospitalisation on Tuesday to prevent being taken to Lokoja, Kogi State by the police.
Melaye, in a statement through a statement signed by his aide, Mr. Gideon Ayodele, yesterday said having surrendered himself to the police, he did not deserve to be forcibly taken to Lokoja to stand trial for crimes which include murder and armed robbery.
He said, “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.
“But shortly after Mr Melaye entered the police custody in Abuja, officers dragged him in a vehicle and headed towards Lokoja, the Kogi State capital which also falls under his Kogi West Senatorial District. Dino Melaye in hospital
“Mr Melaye feared that his life would be in danger if taken to Lokoja, amongst other alleged sinister motives of both the police and the state government there.”
He also pointed out that another reason the senator refused to go to Lokoja was that he had previously secured a court relief for the case to be moved to Abuja.
“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. 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 PRO, Mr. Jimoh Moshood, had been doing was to summon the Senator through media briefings, a practice which is unconventional,” he said.
The Police had in a statement on Tuesday, said Melaye escaped while being taken for arraignment in Federal High Court Lokoja from Abuja when hoodlums and miscreants in two Toyota Hilux Vehicles blocked the vehicle conveying him around Area 1 area of Abuja.
The Police said in the process, the Senator jumped out of the Police vehicle through the window and was rescued from the Policemen by hoodlums and miscreants to an unknown destination.
However, Police said a re-enforced team of officers later trailed Melaye to Zankli Hospital, Abuja where he was re-arrested.
…SARS stops Senate delegation from seeing colleague
Operatives of Special Anti Robbery Squad have stopped the delegation of the Senate from seeing Senator Dino Melaye who is receiving medical attention at the National Trauma Centre unit of the National Hospital, Abuja.
The Senator representing Kogi West Senatorial district was said to be in a state of coma, Wednesday morning.
Senators on the delegation were 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 the senators cannot see Dino Melaye which according to him, was an order from above.
The excerpt of the conversation between one of the senators and the SARS leader goes thus;
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 Senator Melaye but on their way back to the National Assembly, another senator intervened and they were called back.
…more trouble as INEC begins recall process
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has said it will commence the recall process of senator representing Kogi West, Dino Melaye, on Saturday.
This follows a recent ruling by the appeal court which gave INEC the go-ahead to carry out the exercise.
Speaking at a stakeholders meeting in Kogi on Wednesday, INEC Federal Commissioner, Mohammed Haruna, said the verification of signatures of those seeking to recall the senator will commence on that day.
He said the verification exercise would hold in 552 polling units across seven local governments under Kogi west senatorial district.
He also said that the card reading machines will be used to authenticate the voter cards of those that signed the recall petition.
“Only those who signed the petition are expected to turn up at their polling units for verification,” Haruna said.
Also speaking, INEC Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) for the state, James Apam, said local observers would be allowed to monitor the exercise.
He added that no party agents would be allowed access to any of the polling units, and that the result of the exercise will be announced on April 29.
He added: “We have concluded all arrangements in line with our schedule of activities and are set for the exercise.
“The ad-hoc staff have been trained at the state and local government levels and materials procured and sent to the registration area centres ready for movement to the polling units on the day of verification.”