Yekini Jimoh in Lokoja
Barely one week after a constituency project built by Senator Dino Melaye was set ablaze in Lokoja, the Kogi State capital, the skills acquisition centre built by the senator representing Kogi West senatorial district in his country home, Ayetoro Gdede, in Ijumu Local Government Area (LGA) of Kogi State has been vandalised by unknown hoodlums.
According to the National President of Ayetoro Gdede Development Association, (AGDA), Mr. Olorunfemi Ezekiel Adekunle, the dastardly act was carried out last Sunday night.
According to him, the centre was vandalised after several attempts were made to burn down the skills acquisition centre.
Adekunle who described the act as wicked, said the hoodlums who in their dark mind thought that they were destroying Melaye, forgot that they were destroying the community’s asset.
He revealed that the community leaders have officially reported the incident to the Nigeria Police and have also met with the monarch, His Royal Highness, Oba Ehindero, to discuss how to stop further attacks on the centre.
According to him, the services of vigilante have been engaged to watch over the place.
He called on the people of the area to report any suspicious movement around the area.
Reacting to the incident, Melaye has said he would continue to provide facilities, and also defend and protect the facilities in Kogi West.
In a statement issued yesterday, the senator who spoke through his media aide, Mr. Gideon Ayodele said he was still playing his part by facilitating projects even to the most remote part of his constituency.
He equally charged the communities to protect the water projects, electricity, schools, training/ skills acquisition centres provided for them.
“On our part, every bit of our political campaign promises shall be fulfilled. No harassment or intimidation can stop us.
“We will continue to promote things that will bring development to our constituents,” he said.
Meanwhile, the immediate past Deputy Governor of Kogi State, Mr. Yomi Awoniyi, has condemned in strong terms the burning of the schools and skill centres built by Melaye.
Awoniyi, in a statement issued yesterday, condemned what he described as unfortunate treatment meted on Melaye at the outskirts of Isanlu, whilst enroute Egbe, saying it was barbaric.
“However, in view of the values and principles to which I subscribe, I cannot see how logic can be stretched to justify the uncouth behaviour and the wanton orgy of violence and destruction, which occurred in the last few days, not only in Isanlu, but across Kogi West senatorial district,” he added.
“This type of reprobate and decadent behaviour by a handful of rascals, diminishes all of us; collectively. We need to wake up and realise that this could be the beginning of the slide of our community into anomie.
“We must never sacrifice the vaunted high standards and moral values we are known for, on the altar of political expediency. On behalf of those who subscribe to the beliefs I have espoused here, I tender an apology to our Senator Dino Melaye, for the unacceptable behaviour of a few of our misguided youngsters.
“They do not represent who we are in Yagbaland. To those who would hiss and make to dispense of this apology, my prayer for you is for God to open your eyes and infuse you with the understanding that non-violence leads to the highest ethics, which should be the goal of all evolution. Until we stop harming ourselves, we cannot truly claim to be better than savages. The next few months, will experience a lot of political activity. Let us redeem our image by making sure this aberration does not reoccur,” he said.