The Reformed Niger Delta Avengers (RNDA), a splinter group of the Niger Delta Avengers (NDA), has reiterated its support for Patience Jonathan who is currently in battle with the EFCC.
In an official statement issued on Friday by Cynthia Whyte, the Reformed Niger Delta Avengers (RNDA), a splinter group of the Niger Delta Avengers (NDA), says it has “sufficient” evidence that Patience Jonathan cannot obtain justice in Nigeria.
The statement said if the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) refused to act at the end of the 14 days ultimatum given to it to lift the restriction imposed on the account of the former first lady, the case would be taken to the African Commission on Human and Peoples Rights at The Gambia.
The statement read;
“When the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) began the well-orchestrated campaign of calumny against the former President’s wife, Her Excellency, Mrs. Patience Jonathan; we felt obligated to intervene.
“Consequently, we began casting about for the kind of lawyer who could take up the gauntlet against the EFCC and the federal government. All the lawyers we approached turned us down; citing sundry lame excuses. But, TIMIPA JENKINS OKPONIPERE, ESQ., an international lawyer and human rights activist embraced the brief and set out to work immediately; whereupon we mobilized him with 50% of the agreed professional fee.
“Thus began our journey to the African Commission on Human and Peoples Rights at The Gambia.
“However, Mr. Okponipere began by writing an Open Letter to EFCC Chairman Ibrahim Magu dated September 18, 2016; giving the commission 14 days within which to address the alleged breaches of the fundamental rights of Mrs. Jonathan.
“If, at the expiration of the ultimatum, the EFCC failed, refused and/or neglected to address the alleged breaches, Mr. Okponipere already has our instruction to approach the AFRICAN COMMISSION ON HUMAN AND PEOPLES RIGHTS at The Gambia.
“Regarding the proposed journey to The Gambia, we shall embark on the trip for the following reasons, to wit:
“There is sufficient evidence to indicate that Mrs. Patience Jonathan cannot obtain justice in Nigeria.”
The group said the lawyer it hired on behalf of the former first lady had not met her, but that would not discourage it from championing the cause of the wife of the immediate past president, adding that the lawyer wrote a letter to Mrs. Jonathan through one of her personal assistants who is a member of the Rivers state house of assembly, and is still awaiting her response.
“The entire amount of money involved in Mrs. Jonathan’s quarrel with the EFCC is denominated in US dollars; a convertible currency which is international accepted as a means of legal tender.
“Indeed, since after he was briefed, and shortly the open letter was published by media houses at home and abroad, Mr. Okponipere has taken steps to formally notify Mrs. Jonathan via a letter dated: September 20, 2016.
“Mr. Okponipere wrote to Mrs. Jonathan through one of her assistants who happens to also be a member of the Rivers State House of Assembly. The letter was sent through courier service; and it has been delivered. He is therefore, patiently waiting on the former First Lady to invite him.
“Nevertheless, whether the former first lady invites him or not; Mr. Okponipere still has our brief to pursue the matter up to the United Nations Council on Human Rights based in Geneva, Switzerland. We have implicit confidence in his professional capacity as a courageous and brave lawyer whose candour and passionate reverence for Human Rights and the Rule of Law is too well-known locally and internationally,” the statement read