The lawmaker’s arrest comes a day after he was arrested by the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja, while he was on his way to Morocco for an official engagement on Monday, April 23.
According to the police, the lawmaker snatched his seized international passport from NIS operatives and retreated to his house in Maitama, Abuja, where police officers later laid siege into the early hours of Tuesday.
Early on Tuesday, he announced that he would pay a visit to police authorities after his police escorts were withdrawn.
The lawmaker surrendered to officers on Tuesday morning and was taken to the SARS detention facility located opposite the old Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN junction along the Area 1 expressway, a detention facility reputed to house hardened criminals.
In a statement signed by the Deputy Force Public Relations Officer, Aremu Adeniran, in Abuja, he said Melaye surrendered himself to officers to “answer to criminal indictments levelled against him in a case of criminal conspiracy and unlawful possession of prohibited firearms, kidnapping, armed robbery, murder, political thuggery and other violent crimes in Kogi state.”
After criminal suspects Kabiru Saidu, a.k.a Osama, and Nuhu Salisu, aka Small, were arrested at Ogojueje in Dekina Local Government Area of Kogi on January 19, 2018, they confessed to the police that Senator Melaye hired them to cause unrest in the state ahead of the 2019 general elections.
The suspects revealed that the lawmaker handed them a bag containing one AK-47 rifle, two pump action guns and the sum of N430,000 to recruit hardened troublemakers and unleash mayhem in Kogi.
The police first requested Melaye’s presence in a letter addressed to Senate President, Bukola Saraki, dated March 2, 2018, urging him to report to lace bridal gowns the Police March 7 to answer to the criminal offences levelled against him, but he refused the invitation, alleging that the police was colluding with the Kogi State government to cause him harm.
He was officially declared wanted by the police on March 28, the day he was due to be arraigned in court over the charges of criminal conspiracy and unlawful possession of prohibited firearms alongside Osama and Small who escaped from their prison cell. Both of them were rearrested before April 1, but the lawmaker refused to honour the invitation from authorities unless the case was transferred to the Abuja Police Command.
After his arrest on Tuesday, media reports indicated that Melaye would be transported to Lokoja, Kogi’s capital, to be paraded with other suspects who are involved with him in the case.
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