Police Arrest Dino Melaye Over #BringBackOurGirls Protest
The protest tagged “#BringBackOurGirls” was a pressure machinery initiated to compel the federal government to constructively organise serious search and rescue operation for the release of the abducted girls.
A letter purportedly emanating from the Office of the Assistant Inspector-General of Police (AIGP) with Ref No CR/3000/FIB/FHQ/ABJ/VOL.T/137, dated June 20, 2014, directed Mr Melaye to appear at the force headquarters “to discuss crucial issues of security concern.”
The letter was duly signed by Assistant Commissioner of Police, Steve Okoshone on behalf of Assistant Inspector-General of Police, Force Intelligence Bureau.
The letter read: “The Assistant Inspector-General of Police, Force Intelligence Bureau (FIB), Force CID Complex, Behind Federal Fire Service, Area 10, Garki, Abuja, invites you to a meeting with him on Monday 23 June, 2014 at 1200 hrs prompt to discuss crucial issues of security concern. Your response will be highly appreciated.”
Several hours after Mr Melaye showed up at the force headquarters, nothing has been heard of him. Even his mobile apparatuses were switched off.
Previously, Melaye had declared his unabatable vehemence to liberate the masses from what he termed “clutches of political vampires”.
“We must do everything to rescue this country from the hands of these economic canker worm. There is intimidation, incessant arrests, threats and assassination attempts on my life. But for me, I am resolute because the battle to deliver this country from economic canker worms, financial vultures and inept leadership, as I have repeatedly said, is a battle of no retreat, no surrender”, he had said.
He also added: “In an unjust society, silence is a crime; this is the time in the history of Nigeria where silence is no longer golden. People must come out and speak because the day you stop eating is the day you start dying. Where dictatorship becomes legalised, revolution becomes a right”.
It could be recalled that Melaye had on May 9 went to court to challenge the disruption of the protest he led in respect of the abducted students, a case which the Federal High Court ruled in his favour.
Justice Abubakar Talba held that the Nigeria Police Force lacks the powers to prevent or stop rallies or proccessions being held in respect of the abducted female students, and declared as unconstitutional the arrest and assault on Melaye by men of the NPF during the May 9 rally in Abuja.
Justice Talba said: “the arrest of the applicant and threat to further arrest him in respect of rallies or possession is unlawful. The disruption of peaceful rallies and procession by agents of the 1st and 2nd respondents is illegal and unconstitutional.”
The judge also reasoned that since the respondents failed to file counter-process to the one filed by Melaye, it was an admission of the allegations made against them by the plaintiff, and thereby ordered the IGP and CP, FCT to “tender a written apology to the applicant as provided for under Section 35(6) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and also, awarded N150, 000 in damages and cost against the respondents and in favour of Mr Melaye.
The judge also granted an order of perpetual injunction restraining the respondents and their agents from further “harassing, molesting, intimidating, abducting, arresting, detaining and prosecuting the applicant in respect of peaceful rallies or procession in Abuja or any part of Nigeria.”
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