Nigeria’s former First Lady, Patience Jonathan, says there is no truth whatsoever in Economic and other Financial Crimes Commission’s (EFCC) claim that $175m is missing from her bank accounts. This is according to her spokesman, Sam Dokubo, who issued a statement Wednesday on the vexed issue.
In setting the records straight, Mrs Jonathan acknowledged that only the sum of $10m was available in her account balance as of the time it was frozen by the EFCC. She termed the claims of the anti-graft agency as deceitful, and urged the public to disregard them all.
Dokubo wrote, “For the avoidance of doubt, while indeed it is true that Dame Patience is in court for the protection of her fundamental rights infringed upon by a ‘No debit order’ placed on her funds by the EFCC, it is not for $15m but for funds less than $10m as has been clarified several times.
“The purported story in a newspaper on November 19, 2016, about a missing $175m allegedly belonging to the former first lady is not just fictitious but plain falsehood.
“The EFCC has not made any statement to the existence of an investigation of any missing $175m linked to the former first lady.
“If any such funds as claimed, which was deposited by certain verifiable persons has gone missing without a trace from a known bank, Skye Bank, as was reported, then, the bank, its officials and those mentioned must be held to account for the funds and not the former first lady, Dame Patience Jonathan, who was in no way a part of the transaction…”
The probe of Mrs Jonathan had taken different turns since it began with initial claims that her close aides had pleaded guilty to charges of corruption. However, there had been later denials by suspects who allege that confessions were extracted from them under duress.
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