From JULIANA TAIWO-OBALONYE, Abuja
The Presidency has denied reports in the media that the First Lady, Mrs. Patience Jonathan has fallen ill again and flown abroad for treatment.
In a statement by Special Assistant on Media to the President, Office of the First Lady, Ayo Osinlu, said after attending an international event, First Green Women Conference, which took place in Paris on March 17, 2013 where she received the 2013 Global Women Leaders’ Award for Peace, she had been holidaying with her kids as well as taking care of her sick mother in Germany.
Osinlu described as “unfortunate” media houses who allowed themselves to be used by dedicated mischief makers against the basic tenet of professional journalism, which regards truth as sacred.
He noted that it was only routine that the first lady should take medical trips, adding that “it is recommended that every human being should undergo medical check-up every six months, even if not suffering from ill health.”
The statement reads: “Our attention has been attracted by some curiosity in a cross-section of the public and particularly the media, about the movement of Her Excellency, the First Lady, Dame (Dr) Patience Goodluck Jonathan.
“For the avoidance of doubts and ambiguities, we wish to state that the First Lady travelled to Dubai, after which she proceeded to Paris, France, to participate in the 1st Green Women Conference, which took place in Paris on March 17, 2013 where she received the 2013 Global Women Leaders’ Award for Peace. “She thereafter proceeded to Italy from where she went to Germany to see her mother, Mama Sisi, who is currently receiving medical attention.
“The First Lady is spending sometime overseeing the management of her mother’s condition. “She is also using the opportunity to spend quality time with her holidaying children before they return to school, as they are with her to see their grandmother.
“It is unfortunate that again, some media houses have allowed themselves to be used by dedicated mischief makers against the basic tenet of professional journalism, which regards truth as sacred.
“It is notable that Her Excellency has a history of visiting the hospital in Germany even before she became the First Lady, thus making her medical trips routine. “It is also instructive to state that medical experts have recommended that every human being should undergo medical check-up every six months, even if not suffering ill-health.
“Therefore, hospital visitations of our leaders should not become leading media issues or attract disrespectful comments, just as the current circumstances of former President Mandela and other African leaders in similar situations, and even those who died, have not attracted negative comments from their people.
“While urging a more charitable disposition towards one another as our brothers’ keepers, we wish to express our appreciation for the sincere interests of those who have shown genuine concern through their enquiries. “The First Lady is expected back within the next week.”