It’s impossible to stop thinking about how much DCP Abba Kyari’s life feels like a movie written by someone who hates him. Ever since he was first suspended from the Police Force in July 2021 over suspected fraud, he’s become the gift that keeps on giving when it comes to controversies.
Every new twist to Kyari’s story feels like something written by someone high on energy drinks at 3 a.m. on a Tuesday. The author of his story is now bored and distressed and just throwing everything at the wall to see what sticks.
Kyari has already been accused of aiding fraud and trafficking cocaine. Even the United States wants him to be extradited from Nigeria to answer for his crimes. How much more interesting can he get as a character? Every time that you think he’s reached his limit, the man says, “Hold my beer.”
What has Abba Kyari done again?
Let’s not forget that Abba Kyari has been a special guest of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) and later Kuje Correctional Centre since he was arrested in February 2022. The NDLEA accused him of seizing 25 kg of cocaine from traffickers before he sold off most of it and pocketed the money. He’s already been arraigned in court for that offence. This is him during every court appearance since then:
The NDLEA returned to the public on April 25th 2022 to announce that cocaine wasn’t the only drug Kyari was peddling. The new story is that he made a large number of seized tramadol cartons disappear.
What’s the tea?
On April 25th 2022, the NDLEA announced the arrest of Afam Mallinson Ukatu. The suspect was trying to travel from Lagos to Abuja on April 13th 2022 when he was stopped. Ukatu is the chairman of Mallinson Group of Companies, which is a respectable, honest job. But the NDLEA accused him of running a side business of importing tramadol hydrochloride ranging from 120mg to 250mg, which is illegal. Ukatu was basically the yin and yang of pharmaceutics.
Ukatu allegedly used his pharmaceutical and plastic manufacturing companies to cover the massive importation of the illicit drugs. The NDLEA also accused him of running 103 bank accounts to launder money. If all that’s true, then he’s clearly been a very busy man.
If you’re starting to wonder how any of this concerns Abba Kyari, let’s rewind the tape a little.
Back in May 2021, two of Ukatu’s staff, Pius Enidom and Sunday Ibekwete, were trying to sell five cartons of tramadol 225mg. Unfortunately for them, their buyers were undercover agents of the Intelligence Response Team (IRT).
Abba Kyari was the leader of the IRT in May 2021. This sting operation happened just weeks before he was first exposed as a suspected fraud and money launderer.
Kyari’s team made the suspects show them a warehouse in Lagos where 197 more cartons of illicit tramadol were found. Just plain, honest police work. But this is an Abba Kyari production we’re talking about, so you can bet on a twist.
Let’s do some maths. Abba Kyari’s team seized a total of 202 cartons of tramadol from Ukatu’s team. The NDLEA said that haul was worth over ₦3 billion. But when Kyari’s team transferred the case to the NDLEA three weeks later, there were only 12 cartons. That means 190 cartoons went missing in three weeks. Those cartons are worth billions.
The NDLEA has no idea where those cartons went.
Is this even about Abba Kyari?
The short answer is no.
Nowhere in the NDLEA’s statement did the agency actually directly connect Kyari with this new crime of disappearing cartons. Nothing was personally attributed to him, only that he was the leader of the IRT at the time of the magical disappearance. The NDLEA plastering his name all over the statement that’s really about Ukatu’s arrest is simply a game of clickbait.
But with how notorious he’s got over the past year, whatever they say Abba Kyari did, who are we to question it?
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