‘Oduahgate’: Police swoop on protesters; Dino Melaye arrested and whisked off

Posted by News Express | 23 October 2013 | 3,842 times

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The police this afternoon in Abuja swooped on members of the Anti-Corruption Network protesting to demand the removal of Aviation Minister Stella Oduah for allegedly ordering the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority to buy her two bullet-proof BMW cars worth $1.6m (about N255m). The group’s Executive Director, Dino Melaye, a former House of Representatives member, who led the protesters, was arrested and whisked away, according to a story just breaking on punchng.com.

According to the report, “The protest, which held at the Federal Secretariat, Abuja, around 11am, was not without drama as some groups also staged a counter-protest, to drum up support for the embattled minister.

“While the police averted an impending clash between the two groups, the security operatives, led by an Assistant Commissioner of Police in the FCT, Sunday Olukoya, allowed the pro-Oduah protesters to leave, but stopped the bus conveying Melaye supporters, declaring that they are under arrest.

“Melaye, however, protested, asking the police the rationale behind the arrest of the protesters and offering to be arrested in their place.

“The former lawmaker said, ‘When the police pension fund was stolen, we protested on behalf of the police; we were not arrested. When we protested against the theft of fuel subsidy fund, we were not arrested.

“ ‘Now that we are protesting the theft of the nation’s money by the action of the minister, who used Nigeria’s money to buy armoured cars in the midst of lack, we are under arrest. The money was not budgeted for, not appropriated.

“ ‘The protest affects everybody; the police are also affected because they are taxpayers. I’m also a taxpayer.’

“Melaye and others were later arrested by the police and whisked away in a Toyota Hilux van, marked NPS 21280 at about 1pm.”

•Photo shows Dino Melaye.

Source: News Express

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