Stellagate: Dino Melaye arrested for protesting against aviation minister

Police have arrested the activist Dino Melaye at the Federal Secretariat, Abuja, eyewitnesses told The Scoop.

Mr. Melaye, a former parliamentarian turned social justice agitator, was arrested during a planned protest to force resignation of embattled aviation minister, Stella Oduah.

Oduah, who received widespread criticism for her recent pronouncement that the downed Associated Airlines was ‘‘an act of God,’’ has been enmeshed in a series of scandals since President Jonathan first appointed her to helm the country’s aviation sector. The latest of controversy involving Oduah is the purchase of two armoured BMW saloon vehicles for ₦225 million on behalf of Oduah by the Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA).

‘‘Now that we are protesting the theft of the nation’s money by the action of the Minister who used Nigeria’s money to buy armoured cars in the midst of lack, we are under arrest,’’ Mr. Melaye reportedly said following his arrest.

‘‘The money was not budgeted for, was not appropriated’’, he added.

The protest almost turned to a free for all when a counter protest, staged by groups loyal to the aviation minister, collided with Melaye’s activists.

Melaye took to Twitter as the preparation for the protest gets underway to tell his followers not to ‘‘bow to the golden image of corruption. Fight it.’’

An FCT police spokesperson refused to comment on the arrest of Mr. Melaye when The Scoop sought comment earlier.



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