Patience Jonathan Resigns as Permanent Secretary in Bayelsa Civil Service
The First Lady has waved a final bye to her controversial appointment as a “Super” Permanent Secretary in the Bayelsa State Civil Service.
Mrs Patience Jonathan was said to have resigned following the collapse of her relationship with Governor Seriake Dickson.
Mrs. Jonathan is said to be displeased with the governor’s “leadership style”. She resigned to have the moral ground to confront Dickson ahead of the 2015 and 2016 elections, it was learnt.
In July 2012, five months after his inauguration, Dickson appointed Mrs. Jonathan as one of the 17 new permanent secretaries in the civil service.
Dickson said the appointment was based on the power conferred on him by Section 203 of the constitution.
He said it was in recognition of the First Lady’s services to the state and the nation, adding that she was a directorate level officer in the civil service.
Her appointment was, however, greeted with outrage by Nigerians who accused the governor of arbitrary use of constitutional powers.
Sources from the Ministry of Education said the 57-year old First Lady left the service voluntarily.
One of the sources, who pleaded for anonymity, said the ministry has computed her terminal benefits.
When asked the total amount of her terminal benefits, he said: “Well I don’t know. All I can tell you is that everything has been processed.
“The whole thing is political. It appears Madam Peace is not happy with the governor.
“I feel the President’s wife resigned to enable her to have the moral right to slug it out with Dickson ahead of the governorship poll in the state. Let no one deceive you, the whole thing is politics. After all, she is 57 and the retirement age is 60.”
The wife of the President has a National Certificate of Education in Mathematics/Biology, which she obtained in 1989 from the Rivers State College of Education.
She also has a degree in Biology and Psychology (Education) from the University of Port Harcourt, Rivers State.
It was learnt that by the resignation, the First Lady would be pushing with more force her battle to replace Dickson with her anointed son, Mr. Waripamowei Dudafa.
Instead of supporting Dickson’s second term bid, she was said to have preferred Dudafa, the Special Assistant to the President on domestic matters.
The First Lady was accused of influencing the posting of the new Commissioner of Police, Mr. Valentine Ntomchukwu, to the state.
When contacted, Chief Salo Adikumo, who resigned during the week as Commissioner for Education, said he was no longer the commissioner.
He said: “I resigned recently as commissioner to enable me pursue my political ambition. Please direct all your enquiries to the Ministry, “he said.
But, a senior official of the ministry confirmed the development and said it was true that the First Lady resigned.
The official, who pleaded not to be named, for fear of victimisation, dismissed that she quit for political reasons.
He said: “I can say Dame Patience Jonathan has voluntarily retired. But whether there is political undertone in her resignation, I cannot say.
“I think the First Lady felt that her continued stay as Permanent Secretary will be depriving others. Now that she has thrown in the towel, it will afford others the opportunity to take her position.
“Already, in accordance with the civil service rules, we have prepared all her entitlements. Whatever is due her will be given to her. She will also be receiving her pension.”
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