Former President, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan insisted, yesterday, that he is not on self-exile in Côte d’Ivoire as alleged, even as friends and family asserted that he had no cause to permanently relocate from the country
A close political associate, Mr. Yinka Odumakin, after speaking with Dr. Jonathan quoted the former president thus: “I am not in exile; it is quite unfortunate that anybody is insinuating that I am in exile. I am now a private citizen. Since I left office, this is my second visit to Côte d’Ivoire; I have gone to so many countries in recent times as part of my efforts to promote peace. What I am doing is a global tour since leaving office, and this is my second visit to Côte d’Ivoire. It is unfortunate that anybody should insinuate that I am in exile. I am not in exile. When I finish what I am doing here, I will continue my visit all over the world.”
Engr Mike Ogiasa, a relative of the former president, also reacting to the report said: “it is not true that the former President is on the run. We, his kinsmen trust him. When it is appropriate for him to speak he will speak. Jonathan has not gone into exile. Everybody knows a man of Dr. Goodluck Jonathan’s calibre will not do that.”
It also emerged that Dr. Jonathan’s long absence from the country also had a political hue as close associates opined, yesterday, that his absence from the country in the period leading to the recent congresses and convention of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, was deliberate to remove him from the crisis.
Several political associates of President Jonathan, who weighed in on the report by a national daily, informed that they had been in communication with him, with all of them asserting that he did not give any indication of relocating away from the country.