Senator Dino Melaye (APC, Kogi West) has drawn the attention of the Senate to an alleged importation of guns and other military wares into the country by the Governor of Kogi State, Yahaya Bello.
According to him, the items which include: sewn military camouflages with bola hats, many bullet proof vests, night vision googles, tactical boots, tactical knapsacks, training canvas, boxing gloves etc, were intercepted by the Nigerian Customs because they did not come with end user certificates.
Speaking during plenary on Thursday, Senator Melaye said: “Mr. president, due to my private investigation I got a very serious revelation yesterday and I am so happy that a committee constituted by the Senate under the leadership of the ranking senator James Manager.
“The items were intercepted by the Nigerian Customs because they did not come with end user certificates. When you are bringing military equipment into the country they must come with end user certificate certified by the National Security Adviser.
“Upon seizure of these items, one Jerry Omadara, who is the S.A security to governor of Kogi state went to the Customs officers and told them that the items belonged to the Kogi state government and even gave them his complimentary card. Jerry Omadara presented himself physically before Customs.”
The lawmaker further disclosed that his findings brought up the name of the company that imported these items and that it is connected to the state government.
He added: “I have done a search in the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) which have revealed the owners of the company connected to Kogi state government. These items as I speak detention notice is on them.
“Up to the morning, these items are with NACO at the airport here in Abuja. Mr. president I thereby move that the vibrant committee constituted this morning under the chairmanship of James Manager move to the airport to make sure that these items are there and not moved and properly investigated. I said before that militias we’re being equipped by the Kogi state government.
“I believe the committee will unravel the mystery behind this seizure. A situation where a governor is already importing military uniforms and other gadgets when he is not a contractor in the ministry of defence is dangerous trend and the Senate was right when it said Yahaya Bello is a threat to democracy.”
The red chamber referred the matter for investigations to ad-hoc committee investigating the alleged assault by Governor Bello on Sen. Ahmed Ogembe.
The committee is headed by Sen. James Manager (PDP, Delta). Other members are Senators: Adeola Olamilekan, Kabir Marafa, Jeremiah Useni, Chukwuka Utazi and Mathew Urhogide.