A notorious Nigerian drug lord who has been deported twice was arrested again in the country on Tuesday, a pattern that is continually raising questions about the country’s immigration system.
Emmanuel Peter Enobemhe was deported in 2013 alongside the controversial Antony Chinedu, after being found with 425 sachets of heroin.
However, the Nigerian drug lord, managed to sneak back into the country and was arrested in Saika estate in the larger Obama neighbourhood of Nairobi early this week.
He will be charged in court as soon as the investigations are complete, said the head of the Anti-Narcotics Unit, Dr Hamisi Massa.
“We cannot divulge much information now but the investigators are on the ground. Part of the investigations is to establish how he sneaked back into the country after he was deported,” Mr Hamisi said.
Peculiarly enough, Peter’s lifestyle was laid out so well that people almost admire him for his skill.
A non-violent criminal, he is described as “gentlemanly” and an object of veneration rather than contempt.
That tropism toward admiration came out in the neighbour’s sympathetic description of the suspect in Saika Estate.
Saika, a textbook example of the unplanned urbanisation and construction in the city, is by all means a modest neighbourhood, an unfamiliar choice of home for a drug dealer.
Barely fifty metres from the tarmacked Kangundo road, is a five-storey apartment building. Peter had lived there for nearly three months.
It is a humble abode that he had come to use as a place for change of clothing and grooming before leaving to unknown destinations.
Mr Enobemhe may have found a home in these area because another drug lord arrested alongside him owns residential houses in Obama Estate.
The infighting in the dark world of narcotics may have led to the arrest of the two. They allegedly stole 15 kilos of heroin from another notorious drug lord.
From the windows, the house he occupied on the building’s second floor seemed empty with a little mattress on the floor.
According to the building's caretaker, Mr Wellington Kamau, this was the second time Enobemhe had been hounded by the police in the short time he had lived there.
Mr Kamau’s conversations with the Nation, and that of his neighbours, paint the image of a jovial lad who cracked jokes with nothing noteworthy about him.
They did not know his friends; the kind of work he did, where he spent most of his day.
“He always paid his rent on time, always in cash, and was able to make very good conversation with me,” Mr Kamau said.
Very early in the morning on Tuesday, plaincothed police came to Mr Kamau asking him about the whereabouts of Enobemhe.
“He was not around, and quite frankly when they asked me about him, I also realised that I knew very little about the guy,” he said.
Visibly shaken by the events that preceded the low key arrest, Mr Kamau says he did not have anything to report about a tenant that had been among the first to occupy the newly-built houses.
“He came across to me as a very persuasive man, who could make you do anything”, he added.
Mr Kamau said that he had denied Peter the house a few weeks before because they were incomplete.
A young woman who runs a business in the building describes Enobemhe as a Casanova who would escort a woman out of his house and then come back to hit on her.
“There were always women leaving his apartment. Different types of women that he would hug and say goodbye to and then he would come here and tell me he wants me to be his girlfriend,” she said.
The description of the women is consistent with statements from the police that the suspect used young, ignorant women as “mules” to transport the drugs.
When he was arrested in September 2013, for instance, he was in Jacaranda Estate with 425 sachets of heroine alongside a Kenyan woman just a few hours after the woman arrived from Tanzania.
Then, investigations had revealed that the suspect sneaked back into the country through the Namanga border using a different passport.
He told the investigators that he flew to Tanzania and stayed there for three days then drove to Kenya.
He left the drugs there and the woman went to Tanzania on September 10 to collect it.
When Nigerians were deported, the crew including a GSU officer and the plane were detained there and were only released after two weeks following word from President Goodluck Jonathan.
More importantly, investigations have revealed that west African drug lords are moving freely in Kenya and have even invested in real estate.
Most of them no longer lead lavish lifestyles but have shifted to middle class estates.
One of the suspects, for example, has a five-storey building in Obama Estate managed by a man only identified as Hillary.
The apartment is about 200 metres from Kangundo Road near Prestige Medicare.
The same man has an apartment near Great Wall Apartments, another in Mlolongo and a two-bedroomed house.
Anti-Narcotics Unit detectives even know that he owns and lives in a three-bedroomed house in Greenspan Estate.
The suspect’s brother is serving sentence at Kamiti Prison after he was convicted of drug offences. He is expected to complete his term in 2018.
Reports indicate that the man used to import at least two kilogrammes of heroin every week.
He was facilitated by a Kenyan known as Junior, a resident of Ngong Road.
In 2004, he was arrested by Immigration officials when he was found with a Kenyan passport.
He was charged and his bond was paid by a woman who also faced drug trafficking accusations. The woman, detectives say, is related to a senior female police officer.
The suspect owns a Toyota Mark X and Nissan Elegant.
Police say he also owns two matatus registered in the name of a Kenyan woman.