The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has rejected a plea made by Mrs Patience Dame Jonathan, the wife to a former president of Nigeria, to settle out of court the brewing dispute over the strange payment of $11,489,069.03 into her domiciliary accounts.
Consequently, the premier anti-graft agency is requesting that the former First Lady come before a court by entering into a plea bargain in line with the laws of the land.
The Nation reports that the agency said it would only accept a plea bargain in which the court is carried along.
In a January 30, 2018 letter, titled “Proposal for out-of-Court Settlement of all cases related to Dame (Mrs.) Ibifaka Patience Jonathan,” Mrs Jonathan had through her counsel Chief Ifedayo Adedipe (SAN), told the EFCC of her intention to settle the matter.
However, a source, who spoke in confidence, said: “We have considered the January 30, 2018 letter by Dame (Mrs.) Ibifaka Patience Jonathan; we are of the opinion that her offer of out-of-court settlement is strange and confounding as if there is a dispute between her and the EFCC.
“We are certainly rejecting the offer from the ex-First Lady because the EFCC does not engage in such a deal.
“But we prefer the ex-First Lady approaching a court for plea bargain in line with the relevant laws if she is ready to settle all issues. The terms of the plea bargain will be open to all parties before the court.
“I think she should emulate other high profile suspects who went to the court for plea bargain. We are ready to apply the laws in the interest of justice for all. We won’t oppose plea bargain.”
The source said the EFCC would soon make its position known to Mrs Jonathan counsel.
“As an officer in the Temple of Justice, we know that the respected Senior Advocate of Nigeria(SAN) will guide the ex-First Lady accordingly,” he said.