By Gbenga Gbelee
Senator representing Kogi-west senatorial district, Senator Dino Melaye today took
the National assembly by surprise when he suddenly relocated his seat, a move
indicating his defection to People’s Democratic Party (PDP).
The embattled lawmaker announced his preference for a seat on the side of the
senators of the opposition PDP ,an indication of defection at the plenary today
(Wednesdat, 30 th May, 2018), the development which threw the red chamber into a
Sen. Melaye has being away from the Senate Chambers for few weeks and on
resumption today, he asked to be moved from the ruling All Progressives Congress
(APC) side of the chamber to the opposition.
He sought Senate President Bukola Saraki’s permission to leave his allotted seat
and move to the side of the PDP members at the Senate chamber and specifically
asked that he wants to sit beside the former Senate President, David Mark, an
indication of carpet crossing.
Senator Melaye attributed his wanting a change of seat to his present spot to the
discomfort he feels after his ordeal with the police and his health issues.
The lawmakers from the ruling APC kicked against the move by Senator Melaye,
arguing that his action was against the constitution, however the opposition
lawmakers, welcomed the change of seat by Senator Dino Melaye.
In preparation for his change of seats, Sen. Melaye raised a point of order and
thanked his colleagues, members of the House of Representatives, his constituents
and the Nigerian populace for standing by him during his travails in the Senate.
He thanked the leadership of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) for their
Sen. Melaye’s travail started when he refused to appear before the police to answer
to accusations by some arrested suspects, who alleged that the senator supplied
them with arms and ammunition.
The senator had persistently refused to appear before the police on invitation, but
was later arrest and jumped out of the police vehicle while being transported to
The Senator landed in the National Hospital after jumping out of a moving police
vehicle on Tuesday, April 24.
The police confirmed that the lawmaker was arrested for his pending offences of
criminal conspiracy and unlawful possession of prohibited firearms.
He was granted bail in the sum of N90 million by the Wuse Magistrates Court.
He was however re-arrested after perfecting the bail.
According to the police, the investigation team re-arrested Sen. Melaye on May 2,
2018 after his arraignment at Chief Magistrate Court, Wuse for the pending
offences of Criminal Conspiracy and Unlawful Possession of Prohibited Firearms
already filed in a Court of competent jurisdiction in Lokoja for which he will be
arraigned without further delay.
Force PRO, Mr. Jimoh Moshood, said Sen. Melaye was arraigned at the Wuse
Magistrates court for criminal conspiracy, causing damage to government property,
attempted suicide and escape from lawful custody.
His arraignment according to the police, was subsequent to his discharge from the
National Hospital after he was confirmed fit for trial.
The embattled lawmaker was also arraigned before a Lokoja Chief magistrates’
He is currently on bail.