Wednesday 20 July 2016

Tinubu petitions Senate and APC over acts of 'gross misconduct' by Dino Melaye

Oluremi Tinubu
Oluremi Tinubu, the senator representing Lagos central at the national assembly, on Tuesday petitioned John Oyegun national chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), and Bukola Saraki, the senate president, over recent acts of “gross misconduct” by Dino Melaye, the senator representing Kogi west.

In the letters, dated July 18, Tinubu explained that she was complaining to the leadership of the APC and senate about Melaye’s conduct at last Tuesday’s closed-door session, which she termed “improper” and “harmful”.
“What took place at that session was nothing short of a threat of physical assault and abuse against me by senator Melaye,” she said.
“As such, it was an affront to the senate, this government and our party. For a party member to so antagonise and hector another APC member in this fashion places the party in disrepute and undermines the unity needed to accomplish the sober task of reforming Nigeria for the better.”
The senator said she hoped that the party would appropriately sanction Melaye for his “malignant” behaviour.

She said on that basis, the party would affirm its policy of zero tolerance for gender discrimination and restore its reputation as the vehicle of change.

Giving her own side to the story, Tinubu explained that she was recognised to speak after Melaye had “berated” some senators over their perceived roles in the judicial case involving the senate leadership.
“I remained and attempted no interjection during the statement; senator Melaye tried to abridge my rights by hectoring at me and interrupting my contribution,” she said.
“I have cautioned him about the use of his language and the threats made, reminding him that we were there by equal rights as we both represented our constituents.”
She said Melaye charged at her in an effort to “physically” attack her.
“The attack was only prevented by some respectful senators who moved to impede his path or otherwise block him from approaching me,” she added.
“Senator Melaye hurled foul and vulgar language at me; what he said should never be heard in any public institution let alone the floor of the senate.
“I am both a ranking senator and a woman, but senator Melaye took neither into consideration as he issued threats of rape and assault, while boasting that he would face no consequence even if he fulfilled these criminal threats.”
She said it is of great concern that the senate leadership has been silent on the a matter as if it is condoning the “errant behaviour” of the senator.

Tinubu said the party must ensure that its members know how to behave according to decorum, befitting their elected positions.

Tinubu’s letters come one day after she wrote a letter to Ibrahim Idris, acting inspector-general of police, requesting police protection from Melaye, whom she described as a “threat to my life”.
“During the proceedings of the senate on Tuesday, July 14 2016, I had cause to contribute to a matter of national importance,” she had said in that letter.
“Apparently dissatisfied with my contributions, Senator Dino Melaye threw caution to the winds, resorted to vulgar abuse of my person and wanted to assault me.
“It was the timely intervention of a number of colleagues which prevented Senator Melaye from unleashing physical attack on me. However, as the leadership of the senate did not call him to order in the circumstance, he proceeded to threaten my life without any provocation whatsoever.
“In view of Senator Melaye’s antecedent, particularly in the House of Representatives, where a brawl led by him had led to the untimely death of a member, I have decided not to ignore his threat to my life. Therefore, I’m compelled to urge you to use your good offices to provide me with adequate security.”
However, Melaye, the man at the centre of all the heat, has vowed never to apologise to Tinubu.

During an executive session on Tuesday, the senate had urged Melaye to apologise to herin the spirit camaraderie, but he refused to do so saying, “great minds don’t dwell on issues; they act and move on”.

Credit: The Cable

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