By Bisi Lawrence
The man called Dino Melaye may never grow up. Whatever might have been the seamy nature of his upbringing, good fortune placed him in circumstances that would have afforded him a re-birth. He became, first, a member of the House of Representatives, and then a member of the Senate, the highest legislative assembly of the land.
The representatives are accorded the title of: “Honourable” men as of right. “Honourable” Dino once had to be dragged out of the legislative chambers of the house draped in clothes torn during a scuffle in which he was a primary participant. And now as a Senator, among first-class citizens who appropriately call themselves “distinguished”, this man has marked himself out as a foul-mouthed fellow in the midst of decent men and women elected to create laws for the welfare of the nation.
His horrible remarks directed to a lady senator do not bear repetition in a civilized setting, save for the purposes of reporting them. And that has been done, somewhat painfully, across the length and breadth of the media. But Melaye is unrepentant. His types seldom are. They hang on to a cause which they soon tarnish by contact with their dirty disposition.
The cause here is his garish support for Dr Bukola Saraki, the Senate leader, who is up against some court cases remotely arising, apparently, from serious issues between him and his party, the All Progressives Congress, APC, to which Melaye also belongs. It is not on record that the Senate President has, himself, conducted himself with anything other than the best practices of parliamentary conduct in his dealings with those he is seen to be directly opposed. All the same, he was present during the ugly display of ill-breeding by Melaye, and seemed to have tacitly allowed the fellow to spill his bilge on the floor of the committee meeting. That, we must observe, does him and his position as the Senate President, little credit.
One aspect of Melaye’s ill-mannered utterances has to be captured for serious consideration. He added, according to reports, that after he had perpetrated all manner of wicked acts on a fellow senator, “nothing will happen”. That is the height of the concept of impunity. But it is widespread and has almost attained the position of a sub-culture in the ranks of our polity.
It is not as though Dino Melaye could have carried any of his rotten threats in this society of ours, even with our perceived low moral standards, but that he could spit out such shocking words sets him safely in the class of hell-raisers, who generate alarm, discomfiture and general uproar, not caring whose reputation is thereby damaged. They do it usually in circumstances where, on the other hand, to them “nothing will happen”.
Solomon Arase, who just retired gloriously as the Inspector-General of Police, must have been looking forward to a blissful interlude, at least in the first days of his well-earned rest. However, his successor was not on the same with him. To everyone’s surprise mixed in some cases with indignation, Acting Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, announced to the whole world that his predecessor in office had stolen more than twenty official vehicles when the former IGP left office.
“Stolen” may look like a strong word, but it really means no more than taking possession of some else’s property without consent or consultation, and without any intention of returning it. That was exactly what Idris implied that Arase had done. The Acting IGP looked for the vehicles, could not find them where he looked, and so, he, the custodian of the most sophisticated apparatus for the investigation of crime in the country, found no other option than to promptly raise hell!
The police, by all account, is a disciplined force. Courtesy is not mere cosmetic to discipline; it is a discipline in its own observance. We have not read of any apology from Idris to his maligned former boss. From now on, such a fine gesture would be belated. In any case, nothing will happen.