Sunday, September 25

Patience Jonathan: EFCC links 9 houses, 2 hotels & 1 plaza with former First Lady

Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) investigators probing ex-First Lady Patience Jonathan's link with five choice buildings, including a N5billion hotel in Abuja, have discovered seven additional properties believed to be owned by her.

The detectives were in Port Harcourt (Rivers State) and Yenagoa (Bayelsa State) all week trying to establish whether four properties in the two cities truly belong to Mrs. Jonathan, The Nation reports.
It was confirmed that the assignment led the investigators to suspect that seven more properties including the former Customs Service officers mess in Port Harcourt and a plot of land under construction were acquired by her.

Others in the Rivers State capital are: two duplexes at 2/3 Bauchi Street; landed property with blocks at Ambowei Street; three Luxury apartments of 4-bedroom each at Ambowei Street; and Grand View Hotel on Airport road.

Those in Yenagoa are: two marble duplexes at Otioko GRA by Isaac Boro Expressway; Glass House on Sani Abacha Expressway which serves as office of the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board; Akemfa Etie Plaza by AP filling Station, Melford Okilo Road; and Aridolf Resort, Wellness and Spa along Sani Abacha Expressway.

The anti-graft agency, which says it has so far recovered N1b and secured 24 convictions in the South South, may invoke Section 7 of the EFCC Establishment Act 2004 on the affected properties after due verification, sources said yesterday.

Already, the EFCC has written to the Head of the Civil Service in Bayelsa State demanding the pay status and allowances of Mrs. Jonathan during her tenure as a Permanent Secretary. It also sought explanation on whether or not she was paid in dollars, besides travelling estacodes, while in office. The investigators are already back in Abuja to continue their assignment.

A highly placed source said:

 “The ex-First Lady is allegedly linked with the acquisition of the former Customs Service Officers mess in Port-Harcourt.
“We also identified three luxury apartments of four-bedroom each believed to be owned by Mrs. Jonathan. The apartments are tastefully furnished with the state of the art accessories.
“After verification of these assets and completion of our investigation, we may seek the order of the court to place the affected assets under Interim Forfeiture.
“Permission will be sought to ask the ex-First Lady to explain some of the sources of her wealth in line with Section 7 of the EFCC Establishment Act.
“As a First Lady, there was no appropriation for her office and she was not on salary.”

This is the second leg of the ongoing probe of Mrs. Jonathan after about $19.8million had been frozen in five accounts allegedly traced to her.

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