Abba Kyari: I don’t know if NDLEA operatives in Enugu Airport have been arrested, prosecuted–Witness

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When the senior lawyer asked Ajia if the NDLEA operatives at the airport were the people who brought the cocaine parks (Exhibits 7 and 8) seized from the suspects to him, he said: “No, they were not the people.”
“As a commander, have you found out whether your operatives who allowed this drug into Nigeria have been arrested and prosecuted for escorting drugs into Nigeria?” the lawyer asked.”

*Photo: Kyari *

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Mr Mohammed Ajia, the fourth Prosecution Witness (PW) in the trial of DCP Abba Kyari and others, on Wednesday, said that he was unaware if the operatives of the NDLEA at the Akanu Ibiam International Airport, Enugu had been arrested and prosecuted.


The NDLEA alleged that two suspected drug dealers arrived Nigeria through the Enugu Airport.

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Ajia, who is the Commander, FCT Command of the NDLEA, told Justice Emeka Nwite of a Federal High Court, Abuja during a cross examination by counsel to first, fourth and fifth defendants, Onyechi Ikpeazu, SAN.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that while Kyari is the 1st defendant, ACP Sunday Ubia, ASP Bawa James, Insp. Simon Agirigba and Insp. John Nuhu are 2nd to 5th defendants respectively.


They were police officers in the Intelligence Response Team (IRT) of the Inspector-General of Police headed by Kyari, who arrested the two drug traffickers; Chibunna Patrick Umeibe and Emeka Alphonsus Ezenwanne, the 6th and 7th defendants at the Akanu Ibiam International Airport, Enugu.


They pleaded not guilty to the charge preferred against them by the NDLEA in the alleged cocaine deal.
However, Umeibe and Ezenwanne pleaded guilty to counts five, six and seven preferred against them and were convicted and sentenced by the court to six years’ imprisonment.


Upon resumed hearing in the trial, Ajia, while being cross examined by Ikpeazu shortly after he was led in evidence by NDLEA lawyer, Joseph Sunday, said in their investigation at the FCT Command, they found out that the exhibit (cocaine) came from Ethiopia to Enugu Airport.


The witness admitted that the agency maintains its operatives at all the international airport in Nigeria.
“The Airport in Enugu is one of such international airports,” he affirmed while responding to Ikpeazu’s questions.


When the senior lawyer asked Ajia if the NDLEA operatives at the airport were the people who brought the cocaine parks (Exhibits 7 and 8) seized from the suspects to him, he said: “No, they were not the people.”
“As a commander, have you found out whether your operatives who allowed this drug into Nigeria have been arrested and prosecuted for escorting drugs into Nigeria?” the lawyer asked.


The witness said: “It is not within my purview to find out. Am I the commander of Nigeria?”
When Ikpeazu then asked Ajia if the police officers being prosecuted by the NDLEA were the people who truly arrested the drug traffickers after the agency’s officers check, he said: “Yes, it is the police as an organisation.”


Earlier when he was being led in evidence by counsel to the agency, Mr Sunday, the director, Prosecution and Legal Services, the witness said his duty, as FCT Command head, was to oversee the operational and administrative affairs of the command.


He said on Feb 4, he received a transfer letter addressed to him about two suspected drug traffickers and the exhibits.
“The letter duly signed by one Assistant Commissioner of Police by name, Sunday Ubia (the 2nd defendant), signed on behalf of DCP IRT.


“They later transferred two suspected drug traffickers by name; Emeka Alphonsus, 45 years, and Patrick Chibunna, 29 years to the command,” he said.
He said the exhibits were three internationals passports and two identity cards.


“Those were the things I remembered.
“On the nature of the drugs transferred to me at FCT Command, we received on that date 12 white powdery packs of the powdery substance suspected to be cocaine and additional 12 powdery packs in pallet form.
“All in all, there were 24 packs parked in two traveling bags; one brown and the other greenish colour.
“We acknowledged the receipt of the transferred letter and minuted the letter to my exhibit keeper.


Justice Nwite admitted in evidence as Exhibit 13
The witness also identified the two traveling bags marked as Exhibits 7 and 8 containing the cocaine substance.
“I also witnessed the testing of those substance.
“The testing was done pack by pack; each pack has to be tested differently.
“And the results, generally, about 80 per cent tested positive for cocaine while in others, there were traces of cocaine in the substance which suggested that the substance might have been adulterated with another substance,” he said.


After other defence counsel cross examined the witness, the judge adjourned the matter until Oct. 20 for trial continuation.(NAN)

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