MEET FRANK OSHANUGOR
By Frank Oshanugor
The former Commander of Police Intelligence Response Team (IRT), Deputy Commissioner of Police(DCP) Abba Kyari currently in detention is to remain in the custody of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) till March 15 as his baill application was rejected by a Federal High Court (FHC) in Abuja.
AtlanticNewsonline gathered that Justice Inyang Ekwo in his ruling on Monday declined to grant Kyari’s bail application saying it had been overtaken by events following an order of a sister court, granting the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA)’s prayers to detain Kyari for another 14 days to enable it conclude its investigation.
Justice Ekwo held that the sister court, which gave the order in favour of NDLEA on February 22, was a court of coordinate jurisdiction.
The judge, however, said he was inclined to hear Kyari’s fundamental rights enforcement suit with the urgency it deserves after the expiration of the 14-day court order.
He then adjourned until March 15 to hear Kyari’s application to demand for his fundamental rights enforcement.
Kyari and the four other police officers were arrested and handed over to NDLEA on Monday 14th February by police authorities, five hours after the Agency declared him wanted in connection with the drug deal.
Others are ACP Sunday J. Ubia; ASP James Bawa; Inspector Simon Agirigba; Inspector John Nuhu; Chibunna Patrick Umeibe and Emeka Alfonsus Ezenwanne.
Kyari, has however filed a suit against the Federal Republic of Nigeria ((FRN), marked FHC/ABJ/CS/182/22, challenging his continued detention.
In the fundamental right enforcement suit, Kyari is praying the court to compel the NDLEA to grant him bail on health grounds, pending the hearing and determination of his motion on notice.
He told the court through his counsel, Mrs P.O. Ikenna that he is suffering from “diabetes, high blood pressure and severe heart diseases that may cause death.”
“That since he was receiving medical treatment on daily basis due to the seriousness of the illness and that since February 12, 2023, he has not accessed any medical treatment which is dangerous to his health.
Kyari further told the court that he was being held “on the basis of a false allegation that was levelled against him.
In an affidavit deposed to, by his younger brother, Muhammad Nur Usman, which was in support of the suit, he highlighted his health condition and pleaded with the court to release on bail from the custody of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, where he is currently being held.
He told the court that “I am suffering from diabetes, High blood pressure and severe heart diseases that may cause death.
Kyari stated that he was “receiving medical treatment on daily basis due to the seriousness of the illness.
He lamented that ” Since February 12, 2022, he has not accessed any medical treatment which is dangerous to his health.
That failure to check his heart, high blood pressure will result in severe health problems or may even lead to heart failure and death.
The applicant added that due to the fact that he is a diabetic patient and on medical diet, he does not eat outside his home and this is causing a very big hardship on him now that he is in the custody of the NDLEA.
Meanwhile, Justice Zainab Dimka Abubakar of the Abuja division of the Federal High Court has given the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency(NDLEA) the permission to further detain the Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCP), Abba Kyari and six others for two weeks.
They are under investigation for their involvement in a 25kilograms cocaine deal.
The order was sequel upon an application filed and argued by the NDLEA Director of Prosecution and Legal Services, Mr. Sunday Joseph.
The anti- narcotic agency had in the application dated 15th February 2022 in suit number FHC/ABJ/CS/111/2022 sought the leave of the court to detain the suspects in NDLEA custody for 14 days pending the conclusion of investigation.
In an affidavit supporting the motion, the NDLEA stated that the 6th and 7th respondents (Umeibe and Ezenwanne) confessed upon their arrest in Enugu that they imported the seized cocaine through Addis-Ababa to Enugu on 19th January, 2022.
It further disclosed that “the 1st to 5th respondents (Kyari, Ubia, Bawa, Agirigba and Nuhu) are police officers who carried out the arrest of the 6th and 7th respondents and transferred them to NDLEA for further investigation.
“That investigation by the NDLEA revealed that the 1st to 5th respondents have compromised the whole operation and were involved in the importation, trafficking, and dealing and also tampered with the recovered cocaine.
“That the 1st to 5th respondents have volunteered their statements upon preliminary investigation, which has shown complicity in the case. Copies of statements are hereby attached and marked Annexure NDLEA 4,5,6,7,8, & 9 respectively.
“That the investigation will take some time as there are complicated dimensions of the case that require follow-up and unravelling. That the investigation is likely to extend to foreign countries, where some people linked to this trans-national drug trafficking activities reside.
“That it is in line with the above that the Applicant is applying to the Honourable Court for a period of 14 days in the first instance to detain the respondents to enable it carry out its investigation successfully.”
In her ruling, Justice Zainab Dimka Abubakar granted the NDLEA’s prayer and directed that the Agency should at the expiration of the 14 days detention order either seek an extension, file a charge against the suspects or arraign them before the court.