Just a year ago, Abba Kyari was on top of the world — he was a decorated deputy commissioner of police (DCP) and commander of one of the most elite units of the Nigeria Police Force (NPF). He also had a thing for photo-ops:
…and sick ass poses:
But in July 2021, Abba Kyari’s world turned upside down when a weapon fashioned against him prospered. That weapon’s name is Ramon Abbas, aka Hushpuppi:
With allegations that he collaborated with Hushpuppi, a fraudster, swirling over him, and the United States of America demanding the huge honour of his presence, the NPF suspended Kyari. But he didn’t lay down in a corner of his room to cry about how life was unfair to him. And while the Nigerian government was dragging its feet on sending him to America, Kyari allegedly found a side gig dealing cocaine.
His alleged cocaine dabbling landed him in the net of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) and he was soon facing a new set of charges on home soil. And as if he wasn’t already deep in the mud, the NDLEA also found that he also dabbled in some tramadol trade.
It’s been back-to-back-to-back Ls for Abba Kyari for a year now, but something changed recently.
Abba Kyari is anti-japa
Many Nigerians are very eager to japa and relocate abroad these days. But Abba Kyari is the kind of man who’s the opposite, even when he’s being offered an all-expense paid trip to the United States.
“What’s there sef that’s not in Abuja?”
The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) sent Nigeria an extradition request in 2021 to kick Kyari over to the United States to answer for his crimes. But the office of the Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF), Abubakar Malami, didn’t file extradition charges against him until March 2022 when he was already the NDLEA’s special houseguest.
The AGF’s timing was problematic for one reason: he was setting Kyari up to win.
How Kyari got his groove back…
Section 3 of Nigeria’s Extradition Act provides for an extradition request to be rejected if the suspect has a pending criminal case in Nigeria. Since the NDLEA already charged Kyari to court on drug trafficking charges, it was clear to even an infant that there was no way a court would approve his extradition to the United States. In fact, this scenario gave rise to online conspiracy theories that Kyari’s cocaine entanglement was orchestrated so he could legally abort his trip to America.
On August 29th, 2022, Justice Inyang Ekwo of the Federal High Court in Abuja threw out the Federal Government’s extradition case against Kyari as predicted by everyone but AGF Malami. The judge described the government’s case as “strange, incompetent and bereft of merit” and wondered how a whole AGF would do such an abysmal job.
By hook or crook, AGF Malami handed Abba Kyari the first thing he can consider a win since Hushpuppi rocked his world in 2021. But, of course, this is Kyari, so there’s always some twist.
…and how he lost it
Whatever oil that helped Kyari win on August 29th, it was already dry the next day when his NDLEA trial resumed before Justice Emeka Nwite at the Federal High Court in Abuja.
Justice Nwite rejected Abba Kyari’s application for bail despite his protest that he’s not a flight risk. It was the second bail application that the judge has rejected since Kyari’s trial started.
On the same August 30th, the NDLEA filed fresh charges against Kyari for non-disclosure of assets and money laundering. The agency also found over ₦207 million and €17,598 in bank accounts that were linked to him.
What will happen to Abba Kyari now?
Abba Kyari’s dramatic fall from grace plays like a Fela song that doesn’t know when to end. He finally tasted victory for the first time in a long time but couldn’t enjoy it long enough before he returned to the mud again.
We know enough of Kyari now to be certain that this isn’t the end of his story. The “supercop” always has a twist up his sleeves because it’s never boring on the Abba Kyari express train. When will he run out of drama?