Dino Melaye didn’t jump out of a moving vehicle – Witness tells court

Senator Dino Melaye, sitting on the floor after jumping out of a moving police van
Senator Dino Melaye, sitting on the floor after jumping out of a moving police van

A Prosecution witness told an FCT High Court that Dino Melaye, a senator, did not jump out of a moving vehicle on April 24, 2018

A police driver with the Inspector-General of Police Special Tactical Squad, Inspector Abana Mallum, while testifying, said: “Anyone who said Melaye jumped out through the window, is a liar.”

Mr Melaye, who represents Kogi West senatorial district in the National Assembly, is charged before Justice Sylvanus Oriji, sitting in Apo by the police with six counts bordering on attempted suicide, attempt to escape from custody and damage of police property.

He was said to have committed the alleged offence while being conveyed by the police to Lokoja, the Kogi State capital.

The police alleged that Mr Melaye sat on the ground, holding a substance in one hand, threatening to drink it to kill himself and implicate police officers.

He was further alleged to have broken the windshield of the vehicle in which he was being conveyed to Lokoja with his elbow and caused damage to police property.

The offence, the prosecution said contravened the provisions of sections 148,153,173,231, 326 and 327 of the Penal Code.

The witness, made this known while being cross examined by counsel for Mr Melaye, Benson Igbanoi, who held the brief of Mike Ozekhome,SAN.

He stated that the police team conveying Mr Melaye to Lokoja took off from the Abattoir office of the IGP squad and was intercepted at the Area 1 roundabout in Abuja by a Hilux van.

Mr Mallum, who testified as the second prosecution witness (PW2), informed the court that the bus he was driving was blocked by an unknown van that someone in the bus forcefully opened the door.

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He said Mr Melaye was seated in the second row on the left side of the vehicle.

He said there were six other policemen, including the team leader, Sunday Ibrahim.

The witness told the court that he did not see the senator holding a gun at the scene of interception by the Hilux van.

Mr Mallum, however told the court that Mr Melaye held something in his hand but he could not identify what it was.

“I don’t know where he got the thing from,” he said.

The police inspector further informed the court that the police team chased the Hilux van caught up with it at the Yar’Adua Centre.

“We caught up with them near Yar’Adua Centre.

“Some of them ran into the bush behind the National Mosque. Only one person was eventually arrested there.

“I don’t know the name of that person. I don’t know if that person was charged to court for any offence. I don’t know how many of them escaped; I only know one was arrested.

“Anyone who says three person were arrested, that person is telling lie,” Mr Mallum told the court.

Meanwhile, Mr Oriji has adjourned till May 28 for continuation of hearing.

(NAN)

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