Anti-corruption: Patience Jonathan Loses N1bn To FG


Dame Patience Jonathan, wife of former President Goodluck Jonathan has forfeited temporarily about N1.0004 billion to the Federal Government.

The interim forfeiture followed a court order secured by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in an alleged money laundering case involving the former lady and a company called, Magel Resort Limited.

According to information with the anti-graft agency, the amount was lodged in three deposits with Fidelity Bank Plc on May 20 and 25, 2015.

The forfeiture order given by Justice A. Lewis-Allagoa of the Federal High Court sitting in Kano, is consequent upon an ex-parte motion filed by the EFCC seeking an interim forfeiture of the money.

The affidavit deposed to by the anti-graft agency said the contentious funds were found in an account belonging to Magel Resort Limited, a company linked to the former First Lady.

The Commission had gotten an intel that a bank account, domiciled in Fidelity Bank, had huge sums that were not being used by anybody.

Upon receipt of the intelligence, the EFCC swung into action and its preliminary investigation revealed that Patience Jonathan and some relatives of the former President Jonathan were directors of the Company.

Others named as directors are Oba Oba Tamunotonye, Goodluck Jonathan Aruera, Goodluck Jonathan Ariwabai and Esther Fynface.

In trying to trace the origin of the money, it was discovered that N500,000 was deposited on the May 20, 2015 by Fynface, allegedly in charge of the Company, while N1 billion (One Billion Naira Only) was transferred in two tranches on the May 25, 2015 from PAGMAT OIL AND GAS NIGERIA LIMITED, a company that was not incorporated with the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC).

In his ruling, Justice A. Lewis-Allagoa said: “An interim forfeiture order is granted to the Federal Government in the sum of N1,000,494,000 (One Billion, Four Hundred and Ninety Four Thousand Naira Only) in the bank account of the 1st respondent, Magel Resort Limited 4011019546 which is maintained with 2nd respondent, Fidelity Bank Plc”.

The court further directed that the forfeited sum be deposited in the Treasury Single Account (TSA) of the Federal Government.

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