Police, Melaye feud over guns for criminals

From Ibrahim Obansa, Lokoja
The Police High Command on Monday went to Lokoja, the Kogi State capital to parade two suspected political thugs allegedly armed with two AK-47 and five Pump Action guns by Senator Dino Melaye, who represents Kogi West Senatorial District in the National Assembly.
The suspects were identified by Force Headquarters Public Relations Officer Mr. Jimoh Moshood as Kabiru Saidu aka Osama and Nuhu Salisu Aka Small. They were paraded at the Kogi State Police Command in Lokoja by Jimoh, who took over the job of the police commissioner.
According to Jimoh, the suspects were arrested after a gun battle with a police team for several hours on January 19, 2018.
Moshood told journalists that the two suspects upon interrogation confessed that they were working as political thugs for Senator Melaye.
In a reaction, Melaye said that it was a frame up and an orchestrated attempt by the state government to discredit him.
The senator said he had never seen the suspects in his life and did not have anything to do with them.
Melaye said that the move was an attempt by the Kogi State government to shut him up and prevent him from speaking the truth about governance in the state.
He said that he contested and won election to the House of Representatives and the Senate without working with political thugs, adding that the plan had been exposed about six weeks ago.
According to Melaye, “this is an attempt to shut me up and stop me from speaking the truth, but they have failed. It is an orchestrated lie by the governor and the police, I have tweeted about six weeks ago that they want to set me up because I got a hint from the Government House when they met to set me up
“You can see the conflicting statements by the criminals, I heard one said that I gave two AK-47 and pump action, while the other said I gave only one rifle and that I gave N430,000 to train militia, and that I met them at the Airport Road in December 2017, but they didn’t give a date and time.
“I don’t know anybody I have not involved myself with any thugs I became member House of Representatives and Senate without thugs , if this is an attempt to shut me up they have failed,” he said.
When he returned to Abuja, Moshood issued a press statement that the Police had filed a case in a Lokoja court accusing Melaye and three other persons of illegal possession of firearms.
Moshood said that the police took the action following the confession of two a�?dreadeda�? thugs that they were working for Melaye.
The men were arrested on 19th January at Ogojueje in Dekina Local Government Area of Kogi State, after a shootout with the police and have confessed being hired by Melaye to cause mayhem in the state, Moshood said.
The third person charged to court with Melaye was identified as Alhaji Muhammed Audu, a politician, who is now at large.
The police said they seized from the thugs and their gang members two AK-47 rifles, five pump action guns, two locally made pistols and heaps of charms.
According to the police, the men not only confessed to have been involved in several kidnappings in the state and environs, they also claimed to be hired thugs for politicians.
a�?According to the gang leader, Osama, he has been working as a political thug for one Alhaji Mohammed Audu a politician in the state.
a�? He said that Alhaji Mohammed Audu invited him to Abuja and introduced him to Senator Dino Melaye and they met on Airport Road, Abuja inside the Senator Dino Melayea��s car in December, 2017.
a�?The suspect further confessed that Senator Dino Melaye told him that they should start working for the Senator as his political thugs and they should recruit and train other thugs to work for him in preparation toward 2019 general elections to enable him (Dino Melaye) challenge his political opponents and disorganise Kogi State.

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