Justice Inyang Ekwo of the Federal High Court, Abuja yesterday refused to grant bail to detained Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCP) Abba Kyari, who is currently under investigation on alleged drug trafficking offences.
Kyari who is the former Commander of Intelligence Response Team (IRT), Force Intelligence Bureau, Nigerian Police Force, have been in custody of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) since his arrest on February 14, when he was arrested by the police and then handed over to the NDLEA for investigation.
Miffed by his incarceration by the anti-drug agency, Kyari had applied to the Federal High Court to order his immediate release from NDLEA’s custody or admit him to bail on liberal conditions.
Kyari on one hand had anchored his application on medical grounds so as to attend to his failing health being a diabetic patient and also suffering from High Blood Pressure.
On the other, the applicant claimed that the charge was ‘trumped up’ not having substance.
However, ruling in the application yesterday, Justice Ekwo held that the application had been overtaken by events.
According to the judge, the order to detain Kyari for 14 more days pending investigation was obtained from a court of coordinate jurisdiction.
He added that he would not make an order contrary to that of a court of coordinate jurisdiction.
Ekwo said: “The only order I can make in addition to what I have said is that the respondent shall allow the applicant to his prescribed and verified medication while in custody.”
He subsequently adjourned the matter to March 15, to hear Kyari’s fundamental rights suit.
Justice Zainab Abubakar of the Federal High Court in Abuja, had on February 23, ordered the NDLEA to further detain DCP Kyari and six others for 14 days pending the conclusion of investigation.
The agency had hinged the request on the grounds that the drug trafficking allegations against the suspects were complex and may require the agency traveling outside the shore of the country to make some clarifications.
The NDLEA had declared Kyari wanted over his alleged involvement in a 25kg cocaine deal. In arguing the bail application yesterday, Kyari’s lawyer, Cynthia Ikenna, had drew the court’s attention to Kyari’s failing health which she claimed cannot be managed at the NDLEA facility.
In urging the court to admit Kyari to bail, Ikena submitted that her client was entitled to bail and that the offences listed by the NDLEA against Kyari are not capital offences pursuant to Section 35 of the 1999 Constitution.
“The applicant is suffering from diabetics and is hypertensive and cannot be managed while in custody because the level of sugar has to be ascertained every morning and that would determine the drug he is going to take.
“Since he has been in detention, he has no access to medical care. Even on Thursday when I left here, I went to see the applicant with a doctor but I was refused access”, she stated.
Ikena also assured the court that her client would not jump bail if granted, adding that he has, “a liable surety” that would guarantee the bail.
Responding, NDLEA’s lawyer, Joseph Sunday, told the court that the commission has obtained an order of court to detain the applicant for 14 days for further investigation.
He claimed that the NDLEA has an “excellent medical facility” to take care of the applicant.