Alex Enumah in Abuja
The federal government Wednesday arraigned the Senator representing the Kogi West senatorial district, Dino Melaye, before a High Court of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) on a six-count charge, bordering on attempted suicide, attempt to escape from custody and damage of police’s property.
Counsel to the federal government, Dr. Alex Izinyon (SAN), had told the court that the defendant committed the alleged offences on April 24, 2018
The offences, according to the federal government, contravene the provisions of Sections 148,153,173,231, 326 and 327 of the Penal Code.
Izinyon alleged that Melaye, while being conveyed on a police vehicle to Lokoja, the state capital, forced his way out and escaped.
The prosecution claimed that the defendant after jumping out of the vehicle sat on the ground, holding a substance in one hand threatening to drink it to kill himself, so that he can put the police officers in trouble.
The senior advocate, in addition, told the court that Melaye broke the glass of the vehicle with his elbow and caused damage to police’s property.
Melaye however, pleaded not guilty to the charges when read.
Following his not guilty plea, his counsel moved his bail application, submitting that the offences of the defendant were bailable.
He also informed the court that Melaye is currently on bail granted him by an Abuja Magistrate Court over the same matter.
He therefore, urged the court to release his client on similar conditions given by the Magistrate Court.
Prosecution counsel however urged the court to decline the application, though he admitted that bail is at the discretion of the court.
In a short ruling, Justice Oriji admitted Melaye to bail in the sum of N5 million and two sureties in like sum.
The sureties, who must be directors in the civil service, are to be residents of the FCT, and depose to affidavits of means.
Justice Oriji however, hinted that the case file would be forwarded to the Chief Judge of the FCT High Court to be assigned to another judge for trial after the vacation period.