The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) and Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Buruji Kashamu have been involved in a legal strife concerning Kashamu’s extradition to the United States for drug trafficking charges.
This formal extradition suit number FHC/ABJ/CS/479/2015 came after a company of NDLEA officers surrounded Senator Kashamu during a six-day siege of his Lekki, Lagos residence.
The officers vacated the when Justice Okon Abang of the Lagos Federal High Court instructed NDLEA officers to leave the premises and suspend all actions concerning illegal exploits.
“In this case, the NDLEA is very jumpy, nervous and unsettled because it has exposed its unprofessionalism.”
When a SaharaReporters correspondent called to secure information from the Chicago Attorney General’s offices, where Kashamu’s extradition is originating, an official with the office told our correspondent that, “I know who you are speaking of, but we can't talk of any extradition.”
The official, realizing they may have unintentionally confirmed that an extradition process was in order from the US government, talked back their remarks to the correspondent saying, “I want to be clear, I did not confirm that there is an extradition in order.”
SaharaReporters has had anonymous sources, as well as official NDLEA sources, confirm that the US government placed an extradition request to the Nigerian government to extradite Kashamu to the US. The US Embassy in Abuja and the Attorney General Office in Chicago, USA have refused official comment on anything related to the Kashamu case.
Pending approval from the presiding Judge, Justice Ibrahim Buba, Kashamu has filed a committal suit against the Attorney General of Federation and the Chairman of the NDLEA
denouncing them for contempt of the court.
Previously the NDLEA position was that the now Senator-elect Kashamu was innocent of these drug offences, citing that it was a case of mistaken identity.
These two contrasting stances suggest that the NDLEA’s involvement with the extradition is based on larger international and national interests to extradite Kashamu for future peaceful relations with the U.S., according to one analyst.
In response the NDLEA filed a preliminary objection challenged the jurisdiction of the court to entertain Kashamu’s contention.
The NDLEA lawyer, A.M. Sunday, said that the organization has filed a motion which will reverse the May 26th, 2015 order of the court which dispersed the 50 operatives that seized Kashamu’s home.
Kashamu’ lawyer, Mr. R.A. Oluyede, claims the NDLEA’s claim is not relevant. Oluyede has encouraged the judge to prevent the NDLEA from oversteeping legal jurisdictions. He says the court should repeal the NDLEA”s warrants of arrest that attempt to extradite Kashamu.
Oluyede also sought a court order that calls on the Inspector General of Police to issue additional security for Kashamu so he is protected from any attempts on his life.
In a bench ruling, Judge Buba declined any of the new orders presented, instructed all involved parties to cease from action that undermined the court, and said the matter was adjourned until June 19th.