Nigeria: Presidency Keeps Mum On First Lady’s Ailment

Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan (L) and his wife Patience attends the inauguration of the new African Union (AU) building in Ethiopia’s capital Addis Ababa, January 28, 2012. REUTERS/Noor Khamis (ETHIOPIA – Tags: POLITICS)

The presidency yesterday declined further comment on reports that the First Lady, Dame Patience Jonathan was undergoing medical treatment abroad, following food poisoning even as on-line media reports said the ailment struck eleven days ago in Dubai where she had gone for a medical checkup of a different condition.

Mrs. Jonathan reportedly left Abuja a week ago to Germany when there was no improvement after returning from Dubair.

The First Lady is reportedly undergoing treatment for food poisoning in the Horst Schmidt Klinik in Wiesbaden, Germany, the same Hospital where late President Umar Musa Yar’Adua was hospitalised for kidney-related ailments.

Media assistant to the first lady, Mr. Ayo Osinlu had said on Sunday that Patience Jonathan’s foreign trip was, just a vacation “to take time off to rest” and not for medical treatment.

When contacted yesterday, Osinlu refused to comment further on the matter, saying reacting to the issue will amount to giving credence to a mischievous report. He also could not say when the first lady will return to the country.

All effort to reach the special adviser to the president on media and publicity to the president, Dr. Reuben Abati were also futile, as he was said to be in a meeting.

Online media however reported that Mrs. Patience Jonathan’s ailment “started in Dubai eleven days ago where she had gone to see a doctor because her hands were twitching”, adding that soon after she returned to Abuja last Monday, the emergency broke and she had to be airlifted to Wiesbaden, Germany for food poisoning.

They quoted the first lady’s media aide, to have confirmed that she was in Germany and he was working on a statement on the matter.

Hospital speaks with LEADERSHIP

Meanwhile, our foreign correspondent actually spoke with one of the directors of the German hospital where Mrs. Patience is believed to have been hospitalised.

The director of Horst Schmidt Klinik in the Wiesbaden city of Germany asked our correspondent to call back by 9am today to get actual information on the first lady’s state of health.

He added that it was only the consultant doctor that could speak in an official capacity to our correspondent.

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