The declaration that Mr. Abba Kyari a Deputy Commissioner of Police, is on the wanted list of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), United States of America, has become a big news in Nigeria since it broke yesterday.
He is implicated by Ramon Abass a.k.a. Hushpuppi, during the hearing of his case in the US in which he alleged that he offered Abba Kyari bribe to help him arrest one Kelly Chibuzor Vincent in Nigeria, in a grand plan to remove the latter from the way and deny him of his share of a $1.1m loot from the successful duping of a Qatari businessman.
Though Kyari has denied the allegation suggesting it was crime fighting back but it is a big dent on the immaculate image he had fostered over the years.
He had carved the image of a super-cop, very efficient and incorruptible. He is seen as a good representation of the best the force should be. His cabinet chest is full of award trophies, garnered on account of exceptional performance over the years.
Whether he will be extradited to the US or not to face the charge against him is not yet clear even as FBI (Nigeria’s version of DSS) agents are said to have arrived Nigeria and meeting with Nigeria’s Inspector General of Police on his possible extradition.
Ajaawa, headquarters of Ogo-Oluwa local government of Oyo state is just coming off a crisis-laden period in its chequered history. The security situation in the agrarian community degenerated so much that it was deserted and left desolate at some point.
At the height of the crisis, the town became the target of security forces, which launched series of nocturnal invasions against the community, resulting in deaths, ‘abductions,’ gun attacks, trauma etc.
The first of such dastardly strikes came in broad daylight when buses conveyed gun-wielding, fierce-looking men to the town, to attempt the ‘abduction’ of a prominent man, who was (now believably late) the Chief Priest (Araba Awo) of the town, Chief Adeoye Ifaleye, which was however successfully repelled by the people.
That was not unexpected of a people who had a track-record of bravery. Prior that time, Ajaawa had witnessed two kidnapp cases, one leading to payment of ransom of over N4m before the victims regained freedom and the other resulting in the brutal killing of the victim.
This was considered a slap in their face, hence that day’s attack was gallantly resisted. The first impulse was that another gang of kidnappers had come. This is because the men were not in security operatives’ uniforms. Moreover, upon storming the home of their target, Araba Awo, they presented no warrant of arrest and just opened fire on the ‘suspect.’
This was like a declaration of war against the town. And that was the rationale behind the stout resistance. The attackers were overpowered by the youths despite their guns and expertise in handling the weapons.
Then, the twist. The policemen at the Divisional Police headquarters in the town came to the rescue as they claimed the attackers were from the Inspector General of Police’s special unit – Intelligence Response Team (IGP-IRT). The invaders escaped being lynched by the whiskers.
Thus, the story went that the gun-wielding men were troops from Abuja, whose commander is DCP Abba Kyari.
It is therefore convenient to say that the celebrated Abba Kyari, the super-cop, the incorruptible one, gave the order for the invasion of Ajaawa.
What followed was eruption of further mayhem in the community, with one prominent indigene, who contested but lost the throne of Alajaawa last year, being fingered as the mastermind of the whole charade.
However, another attack on the sleepy town was orchestrated. The ‘policemen,’ said to be numbering over 50, carried out the attack this time in the middle of the night, at about 1:30am, on the residence of the same Araba Awo. He was believed to be a staunch supporter of the Oba of the town, that probably was why he became a target of elimination, which unfortunately had now been achieved.
The people of the community having been browbeaten into submission and indeed blackmailed by the accusation of obstructing police work as even alluded to by the Oyo State Commissioner of Police, Ngozi Onadeko, in an interview, could not come to the aid of their Araba Awo.
But the Araba Awo, popularly known as Babanifa, reportedly squared up to the ‘punitive force,’ succeeding in taking one of them down. He was said to have put down the deadly invasion as they could not take him away during the operation but he was mortally wounded, almost disemboweled.
His people took him to an hospital in Ogbomoso, but at the entrance his attackers who earlier took their equally fatally injured colleague to the same tertiary health centre for possible resuscitation but being told he had passed on allegedly hijacked the wounded Babanifa along with four other people including his wife, two children and driver of the vehicle carrying him to the hospital. Since then, they have not been seen.
Meanwhile, the story went again that the attackers were men under the command of Aba Kyari – operatives from the IGP-IRT he heads.
The next time they would come, they shot their ways to the residence of the chairman of Ogo-Oluwa local government, Mr. Seun Ojo, and the palace of Alajaawa of Ajaawa, Oba Thompson Adeyeye Oyetunji, for the purpose of arresting them. The two escaped but not an aide from each of them.
Again, the troops were from Aba Kyari.
The Ajaawa people are very much likely to be gravely offended by these traumatic experiences. They couldn’t fathom the offense of Babanifa, over which he was hounded and extra-judicially killed, the reason for the commando-style invasions that almost resulted in the desolation of the community.
Many of them might not know Abba Kyari as the commander of the unit raiding their hitherto peaceful town but perhaps, it is nemesis out in anger to bring to book their tormentor-in-chief, as a way of proving their innocence.