John Ameh, Abuja
Former President Goodluck Jonathan’s wife, Patience, has petitioned the House of Representatives, seeking protection against alleged “relentless” harassment by agents of the Federal Government, particularly the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission.
Mrs Jonathan also listed the National Drugs Law Enforcement Agency and the Federal Inland Revenue Service among agencies of the government that were allegedly harassing her.
She alleged that the agencies had continued to attack her and her associates since her husband left office in May 2015.
Mrs Jonathan’s petition was laid before the House in Abuja on Thursday by a lawmaker from Rivers State, Mr Gogo Bright-Tamuno, on behalf of her lawyers, Granville Abibo.
The House, which was presided over by the Speaker, Mr Yakubu Dogara, admitted the petition and referred it to the Committee on Public Petitions for hearing.
She claimed that on many occasions, the EFCC’s Acting Chairman, Mr Ibrahim Magu, ordered raids to be carried out on property linked to her or her relations in a bid to ridicule her.
She stated that the raids were in addition to the freezing of all her bank accounts, non-governmental organisations and those of companies owned by her relations in violation of legal procedures.
Mrs Jonathan further alleged that raids on her property were often carried out in the absence of the occupants of such properties with “spurious” court orders.
The former President’s wife complained that she had yet to know why out of all the “former first ladies” in Nigeria, she was the only one singled out for harassment by the agents of the Federal Government.
The petitioner cited 13 of such instances, one of which she said was the February 2017 report against her by Magu to the authorities in the United Kingdom to “forestall the renewal of her visa and other travelling documents.”
Mrs Jonathan also alleged that there were assassination attempts on her life twice between February and April by EFCC agents.
The petition partly read, “Only recently, on the 8th and 9th June 2017, the EFCC commenced another fresh orchestration of raids on the personal properties of the NGOs of our client situate at Shehu Musa Yar’Adua Expressway, Mabuchi by Setraco Junction, Abuja and ransacked the building.
“They placed seals around it, all without any lawful court order or summons.
“The recent action has agitated the urgent need for this petition to your office. The harassment against our client has persisted unabated.” (Punchng.com)