Two Igbo groups- the Ohanaeze Youth Council and the South-East Women Professionals, Wednesday, asked the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, to come clean on the N350 million freezed by a Federal High Court in Lagos.
The account was freezed after the EFCC had told the court that former first lady, Patience Jonathan, transferred the said money to a company’s account while she was serving as a Permanent Secretary in Bayelsa State between 2012 and 2013.
The commission alleged that the former first lady “unlawfully enriched” herself with the money.
“Out of the alleged proceed of unlawful enrichment of Mrs Dame Patience Jonathan, the respondent transferred the total sum of N350 million from its account in Diamond Bank to the account sought to be attached (Stanbic IBTC) in a desperate bid to dissipate the funds. We have traced the said N350 million to the respondent’s (AM-PM Global Network’s) account sought to be attached and the order of this court is needed to instruct the bank to attach the account to prevent the dissipation of the funds,” the commission had told the court.
In a statement on Thursday, spokesman of the OYC, Engr. Obinna Adibe wondered why the anti-graft agency had continued to link the former President’s family to every single kobo.
He said in the present instance, “it beats imagination that Patience Jonathan could be linked to an account wherein she is not in any way a member of the company’s board of directors.
“We are, therefore, amazed that an amount traced to the said company could be linked to her, without any mention of the company’s board of directors.
“We have said it over and over again; we are totally in support of the on-going anti-graft campaign. However, what we are against are actions that make the anti-corruption war look like nothing but witch-hunting of the immediate past administration.
“In the present case, the EFCC should do well by publishing the names of the board of directors of AM-PM global Network; this will enable Nigerians make a credible judgement on the matter. It is not just enough to link Patience to every kobo in order to perceivably continue painting the former first family black.”
Similarly, the South-East Women Professionals have also risen in defence of Mrs. Jonathan, urging the EFCC to clarify issues surrounding the N350 million.
President of the group in a terse statement said, “it has again come to our attention that the court has freezed another account claimed to be belonging to the Dame Patience Jonathan.
“It is, however, alarming considering that the company in question does not belong to her; we are then bordered how the said money could be out-rightly linked to her. This smear campaign is been taken too far.”