6 September 2011

Nigeria: Jonathan Can't Control Patience - Wikileaks

Photo: Leadership
Nigerian First Lady Patience Jonathan

First Lady Patience Jonathan "runs her own show and the husband has little or no control over her," a U.S, cable leaked by Wikileaks has said, stressing that she has a more forceful personality than the husband.

The cable which quoted a source in Bayelsa State, said the First Lady has "tremendous influence" over President Goodluck Jonathan and his administration at the time he was governor of Bayelsa State.

According to the report, Jonathan, then governor of Bayelsa managed to distance himself from the wife when the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) seized the sum of $13.5 million from her at an airport in 2006, noting that no findings have been reported from a reported investigation.

"In September 2006, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) seized USD 13.5 million from Mrs. Jonathan at an airport. Reports indicated the money was laundered through an associate; Jonathan managed to distance himself from the deal. The anti-graft commission investigating the source of the money has reported no findings to date," the report said.

The report also said Jonathan's defining characteristic of loyalty, recalled that when his former boss, Diepreye Alamieyesiegha was arrested in London, "Jonathan was reluctant to take over as governor or to appear too eager to fill his superior's shoes."

"He waited until he was compelled by the presidency to claim the governorship," the report said pointing out that President Jonathan is supporting the Alamieyesiegha family.

Wikileaks also said it was Jonathan's loyalty that likely compelled President Obasanjo to select him as Yar'adua's running mate, "perhaps to forestall the type of conflict Obasanjo perceived himself to have experienced with Atiku."

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