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Court remands Dino Melaye in police custody for 39 days
Dino Melaye, Kogi State senator, has been denied bail on Thursday after he was arraigned before a magistrate court in Lokoja, Kogi State capital, with the Magistrate ordering that he be remanded in police custody for 39 days.
Melaye, lying on a stretcher, was transported to Lokoja in a police Ambulance which left Abuja at about 4 am and arrived at 7 am. He was arraigned on fresh charges of conspiracy and aiding of jail break.
At the commencement of hearing, Alex Isihon, the prosecution council, argued that the court did not have the jurisdiction to entertain the case. But Mike Ozekhome, Melaye’s lawyer, argued that the court had the power by virtue of the Constitution to try the case, while also pleading the court to grant his client bail according to the Kogi State Administration of Criminal Justice.
However, Suleiman Abdulahi, the Magistrate in charge of the case, rejected the bail application and ordered that Melaye be remanded in police custody for the next 39 days. He subsequently adjourned the case till June 11.
Melaye had been granted a N90 million bail on Wednesday, when he was arraigned at an Abuja court for alleged attempted suicide and escape from lawful custody. But the police rearrested him as he left the court premises.
Jimoh Moshood, spokesman of the Police, explained that the bail granted Melaye on Wednesday does not cover the other offences for which he was to be arraigned in Lokoja. He also said that doctors at the National Hospital had discharged Melaye and declared him fit to stand trial.
Melaye was brought to court on stretchers as he is yet to recover from the injuries he sustained when he allegedly jumped out of the window of a moving police vehicle last Tuesday in an attempt to escape. In a video clip of the incident which went viral on the social media, Melaye could be heard saying “I will kill myself and put all of you (policemen) in trouble”.
The police had declared Melaye wanted after two arrested armed robbery and kidnapping suspects allegedly confessed during interrogation that the senator supplied them the guns they used for operations.
Melaye has another criminal suit against him, filed by the Nigerian police, who accused him of of providing false information about an assassination attempt on his life in April 2017.
This is despite the fact that few weeks after Melaye’s assassination claim in 2017, the police arrested and paraded six suspects who Jimoh Moshood, Police PRO, said were arrested in connection to the assassination attempt.
In fact, Moshood had said at the time, that the arrested suspects confessed that they were recruited by Edward Onoja, Chief of Staf to Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State, to kill Melaye.
Melaye denies all the allegations against him, insisting that his ordeal was being orchestrated by Bello, who, though is of the same All Progressives Congress (APC) as the embattled senator, does not see eye to eye with him.