Former President Goodluck Jonathan has reacted to reports alleging that he received the sum of $200 million from the infamous $1.3 billion Malabu oil deal.
In a statement issued on Tuesday, April 11, 2017 and signed by Ikechukwu Eze, his media adviser, Dr. Jonathan said that he never received a bribe from any actor in the Malabu oil deal.
The statement described the story published by an American online news platform, Buzzfeed, as false adding that it was a sponsored propaganda against him by those who were threatened by his rising profile in the international community.
Noting that the published story was targeted at tarnishing his image, the former president in the statement said: “It is one more in the series of fake news sponsored by those threatened by Dr. Jonathan’s continuously rising profile in the international community.
“Commonsense should have shown the purveyors of this slander that the Malabu oil deal far predated the Jonathan regime and it would only make sense for him to be bribed if he had a time machine to go back in time to when the deal was struck.”
Jonathan further added that the report lacked facts hence a baseless asssumption.
“The man quoted by the report said he ‘assumed’ that Dr. Jonathan would be bribed.”
He continued: “The report also wrongly claimed that ‘Jonathan and Etete’ had known each other for years, according to Shell staff, when Jonathan served as a tutor to Etete’s children while he was a minister.”
While further discrediting the claims made in the article connecting him to the oil deal, Jonathan added: “In the first place, the former president couldn’t have been a ‘tutor’ to Etete’s children without first establishing a contact with the family.
“This is because Jonathan met Etete, who served as the petroleum minister during General (Sani) Abacha’s military regime for the first time under the succeeding civilian administration, when he was already the deputy governor of Bayelsa State.
“Even then, the fact remains that ex-President Jonathan has never met any of Etete’s children.
“Jonathan could not have been anybody’s private tutor during that period because he was already in the directorate cadre in the Oil Mineral Producing Areas Development Commission, (now NDDC), having already left the academics, at the time Etete was a serving minister.”
He added that the allegation surfaced after his detractors tried to tarnish his image by alleging that he refused the help of the British government in rescuing the abducted Chibok girls.
“It is instructive that this same old fable apparently intended to rubbish Jonathan’s name locally and internationally is being recycled with more lies added to garnish the narrative, at a time the ex-President is making efforts to resolve the issues in the Peoples Democratic Party.
“Again, let us point out for clarity and for the umpteenth time that while he was in office and now that he is out of office, former President Jonathan did not open and does not own any bank account, aircraft, or real estate outside Nigeria. Anyone with contrary information is challenged to publicly publish same.”