A press statement issued by the police stopped short of labelling Senator Dino Melaye a criminal. What are your thoughts?
Saraki and the rest of the senators were livid after IGP Idris refused to honour an invitation extended his way--at the third time of asking.
It didn’t matter that Idris had sent officers to represent him each time he was summoned. For the senate, those officers weren't good enough.
Moshood’s press statement was an equally scathing one. It is believed that Idris is only being summoned by the lawmakers to explain why Senator Melaye is still a guest of the police.
Moshood said the IGP has done no wrong because under the provisions of the Police Act and Regulations, the IG could delegate a Deputy or Assistant Inspector-General of Police to represent him in an official capacity at any function.
He explained that Idris sent representatives the first time out, because he was on an official assignment with the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria to Bauchi on same date.
According to Moshood: “The delegated officers went with a brief of the Inspector-General of Police on the matter to the senate but the senate refused to listen to the officers."
Moshood added that on May 2, the senate refused to acknowledge some senior officers delegated to represent the IG when he was on an official duty to Birnin-Gwari, Kaduna State.
45 persons were killed in Birnin Gwari this week.
The spokesman said that on May 8, the IG sent a letter to the president of the senate explaining why he would not be appearing before lawmakers on May 9.
This was because he is legally restrained from doing so, no thanks to pending cases before the courts filed by Sen. Dino Melaye against the IG and the Nigeria Police Force, Moshood said.
In Moshood’s words: “The action of the senate in its resolution against the IG today is a deliberate blackmail, witch-hunting with mischievous motives to hand-twist the IG to pervert the end of Justice.
“The Nigeria Police Force is the first defender of democracy and all democratic institutions in Nigeria and will continue to do so.
"It is factual and verifiable that Sen. Dino Melaye was discharged and certified fit to stand trial by the National Hospital, Abuja before he was arraigned in Chief Magistrate Courts in Wuse, Abuja and Lokoja”.
Melaye is still in court for charges bordering on illegal possession of firearms, attempted suicide, criminal conspiracy and damaging of government property.
But did the police just call Melaye a criminal in the following paragraphs or were they talking about someone else? You be the judge:
“The Nigeria Police Force as a law abiding organization will continue to hold the Senate of Federal Republic of Nigeria in high esteem but wishes to impress on the senate not to harbour criminal elements among its fold or condone criminality".
'Criminal elements among its fold'......the only senator standing trial for alleged criminality at the moment is....but....hold on:
“The Force will not be intimidated by any individual, groups or institution, constituent or otherwise to abdicate from its constitutional responsibilities of protection of lives and property”, Moshood said.
That's as fierce a press statement as you are ever going to get from the police.
What do you think, guys? What do you infer? Who are the 'criminal elements' referred to in this statement?