I’VE LEARNT MY LESSONS’ – MELAYE DENIES COLLECTING N3bn FROM ATIKU, DANGOTE
December 9, 2023
By John Alechenu, Abuja
The governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the Kogi State governorship election, Senator Dino Malaye, has denied speculations that he collected N3billion from former Vice President Atiku Abubakar and Chairman of Dangote Group, Aliko Dangote, for the elections.
Melaye said this at a dinner organised in his honour by members of his campaign organization in Abuja, on Thursday.
He explained that the speculation was the handiwork of his detractors, who were bent on detailing his campaign.
Melaye described the speculation that he collected N1 billion from Atiku and N2billion from Dangote as “fake news” peddled by “betrayers.”
The former federal lawmaker also enumerated three basic lessons he learnt from contesting the election.
Melaye said, “One of the lessons is that the east now know more than ever before, that they cannot become governor alone. You will have to collaborate with another zones to become governor.
“The second lesson is also for those of us from the west. That next time we should listen to the words of wisdom from our elders and not from commercialized characters who because of their individual and selfish interests created problems for us.
“Because at the end of the day, what our elders have been saying that this will be the worse (election) for us is eventually what happened.”
The PDP governorship candidate also explained that unity was required within the PDP family in the state especially in Kogi West in order for the party to win any election.
He declared that it was against the political interest of the party for Kogi West or any Zone in the state for that matter, to field more than one candidate in such a critical election.
Melaye further said, “…We went through these elections, irrespective of the outcome, irrespective of betrayals, and so many things, there’s a reason to thank God and thank everyone of you, particularly our leaders and i specially appreciate General Tunde Ogbeha(Retd).
“Throughout the campaign, not once did we have any gunshot at us; not even once, we we’re moving around the states throughout dead nights.
“In fact, we even went to Bassa. We were driving through that very lonely road on unholy hours of the nights. We got to Anyigba at about hours like12 midnight or 1a:m and the kind of stories of gunshots, there were no case or cases of gun shots at us or the kind of killings like what we were told when the SDP visited any other place in the east. We didn’t experience any of such we didn’t lose any soul. This, we are grateful to God”.
He explained that November 11 was an anti-climax because there was no election, but there was a process.
“…but when it got to be proper elections, there was no election along side following the tenets and doctrines of democracy were not respected.
He urged his campaign directors not to despair. He said, ”It will not be the way it is. Again, if people have faith in us, it will not be the way it is. Especially those of us from the western flank. There was this very false message that some leaders from the West that one of my leaders said that I want to create confusion.
“Yet some leaders insisted and said this is what they were going to do. Everybody has been served breakfast, I want to believe that by the grace of God , we have learnt a lot of lessons from this election.
“We gave Kogi the type of campaign they have never seen. That’s the truth. We had a sophisticated campaign. We had a policy document that took about three months to put together and we had the message and we went round.
“And by the grace of God, we cannot also say we lost because there no election. By the time we do the statistics, what we spent in this election has never been spent by PDP in the history of Kogi State, we know, I mean, we know that.
“So, I will need not to get disillusioned, It’s not to get disenchanted, It’s not to get discouraged. It’s for us to hold ourselves together as a political family.
“And say, we’re what we what we lost on the streets, we will regain at the roundabout. And this election also taught a lot of lessons.”
In his remarks, the former governor of the state, Captain Idris Wada, who was the Director General of the campaign, commended the PDP candidate for his candid assessment of the campaign and what happened during the polls.
He explained that if there was an alliance between the West and East senatorial zone, the PDP would have easily won the election.
Wada commended Senator Melaye for running a good campaign throughout the electioneering process.