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First Lady denies looting NDDC funds

Published by Tribune on Tue, 03 Feb 2015

NIGERIA'S First Lady, Patience Jonathan, has rejected an online media report suggesting that she had received the sum of N3 billion from the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) to facilitate the commission's 2015 budget.The report had also alleged that she collaborated with former Minister of State for Education, Nyesom Wike, to run some schemes with which they siphoned money from the agency.However, in a statement by Ayo Adewuyi of the media office of the wife of the president, issued in Abuja, on Monday, he described the report as a hoax.He said the report was a deliberate attempt to mislead unsuspecting members of the public and recruit them into their hate campaign against the First Lady.The statement said the report was done in an effort to portray her as an overbearing and intrusive woman against her well-known passion for peace and advancement of the cause of women and children in Nigeria.The statement read: 'Nigerians are very conversant with the workings of the National Assembly regarding passage of budgets.'Parliamentary process requires that the Appropriation Bill goes through first reading, second reading and third reading and subsequent harmonisation by the two chambers.'One then wonders at which level of this process the First Lady influenced the passage of NDDC budget that warranted her being paid N3 billion for the alleged 'consultancy.''Therefore, it will be impossible for one single person to influence its passage or is the author trying to indict our lawmakers''The report is, therefore, to say the least, dubious, diversionary, unfair, unkind and totally unacceptable. Mrs Jonathan did no such thing.
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