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Abba Kyari’s Bail Plea Caused by Threats to his Life, Correctional Centre Deny it

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Abba Kyari
Abba Kyari

By Uche Amunike

The Federal High Court in Abuja has resumed hearing as suspended Deputy Commissioner of Police, Abba Kyari’s bail plea sufficed, Thursday, with claims that his life was being threatened in custody.
Kyari, who is presently standing trial for alleged drug trafficking, informed the court through his team of lawyers led by Dr Onyechi Ikpeazu, that he was feeling unsafe at the Kuje Correctional Centre where he was being remanded alongside hardened criminals.
According to Ikpeazu, a fresh application for the court to look into his client’s earlier request for bail, pending the determination of the charge against him was expedient considering the nature of assignments he carried out during his time as a police officer.
He went on to explain that some of the inmates at the correctional centre where his client was remanded, were people that his Police Intelligence Response Team arrested, insisting that it was not safe for him.
Three other officers that were on trial over the alleged offence also joined in Abba Kyari’s bail plea. They are ACP Sunday Ubia, Inspector John Nuhu and Inspector Simon Adirigba. They all pleaded that the court should grant them bail on grounds of safety.
An Assistant Superintendent of Police, however, who is the third defendant in the matter, Bawa James, did not join them in the application.
The lawyer representing the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, Sunday Joseph, has however asked the court to reject Abba Kyari’s bail plea.
He maintained that the matter was earlier slated for the review of facts of the case relating to self-confessed drug traffickers who were linked to Kyari, Chibunna Umeibe and Emeka Ezenwanne, who were cited as sixth and seventh defendants in the charge marked FHC/ABJ/57/2022 after they were arrested at the Akanu Ibiam International Airport, Enugu, while attempting to smuggle cocaine into the country.
On March 7 they both pleaded guilty to the drug trafficking charge. Kyari, on his part, pleaded not guilty to the charge against him, contending that reviewing facts of the case or sentencing or Umeibe and Ezenwanne during his trial would be prejudicial to him, drawing the attention of the court to the fact that both men were also mentioned in some counts in the charge that involved him and the other accused police officers.
On April 28, the court dismissed Kyari’s objections, saying that it would go ahead to review facts of the case against Umeibe and Ezenwanne.
Kyari and his Police co-defendants, however went on to challenge the ruling at the resumed proceedings at Court of Appeal on Thursday.
They also filed a motion asking the court to apply the brakes on the trial temporarily to await the outcome of the appeal. This application was opposed by the prosecution, accusing them of attempting to stay proceedings in a criminal matter.
Justice Emeka Nwite, however adjourned the case till June 14 to hear the defendant’s fresh application for bail.
Recall that the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, NDLEA, had alleged that Kyari and his team unlawfully tampered with 21.95kg of cocaine which they seized from the two apprehended traffickers and accused them of dealing in cocaine worth 17.55 kg.
Kyari, apart from having said to have attempted bribing a senior officer of the NDLEA with $61,400 at a restaurant in Abuja to stop him from testing part of the cocaine that was seized from the two arrested drug peddlers, was also alleged to have committed the offence, alongside the other Police officers, between January 19 and 25, 2022 at the Office of the Inspector General of Police, IRT, Abuja in connivance with ASP John Umoru (who is still at large), contrary to section 14(b) of the NDLEA Act, CAP N30 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004.
In reaction to Abba Kyari’s bail plea, the Correctional Service Public Relations Officer, Mr Francis Enobore, stated that the story about the super cop’s threat to life is false, reckless and mischievous and insisted that Kyari was safe, sound and goes about his daily routine like any other inmate unharmed.
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