First Lady, Patience Jonathan's Health: "Illness started in Dubai" - SaharaReporters; "she's only resting abroad" - Presidency

Speculations over the condition of health of the First Lady, Dame Patience Jonathan, heightened on Monday.

Though it was learnt the first lady was being treated for food poisoning in Germany, Presidency sources disclosed that she was just taking an overdue rest since the last election year.

Saharareporters, had reported on Sunday that Mrs Jonathan was hospitalised in Germany due to complications arising from food poisoning.

The medium added in an update on Monday that the “food poisoning” condition that landed Mrs Jonathan in the German hospital "reportedly started in Dubai 11 days ago, where she had gone to see a doctor because her hands were twitching."

Quoting presidency sources, the medium stated that the First Lady had "gone to Dubai after the recent African First Ladies Summit in Abuja, an event that imposed an unfamiliar and grueling schedule of meetings and late nights on Mrs Jonathan."

According to Saharareporters, Mrs Jonathan's visit to Dubai was explained as a vacation but sources informed it that the trip involved a medical procedure. It added that while in Dubai, she reportedly had "food poisoning" alongside her medical doctor.

Soon after she returned to Abuja last Monday, the emergency broke and she had to be airlifted to Wiesb aden, Germany for food poisoning."

It added that on Sunday night, Ayo Adewuyi, the First Lady’s media aide, told the medium that he (Adewuyi) had just returned from vacation, and pleaded for time to respond to its enquiries.

"When we called him today (Monday) to find out if he had found out Mrs Jonathan’s whereabouts, he confirmed that she was in Germany and pleaded to let him send a press statement regarding the issue. Several hours later, he insisted that he was still working on a statement," the medium said.

However, the Presidency, in its reaction on Monday, denied that Mrs Jonathan had been hospitalised for food poisoning.

Her spokesman, Ayo Osinlu, confirmed that she had travelled out of the country but denied the rumoured illness. Osinlu said the President’s wife travelled out of the country to take a “moment’s rest”. He, however, did not disclose Mrs Jonathan’s whereabouts.

“If you look at her itinerary in August, you would be wondering how she was able to accomplish that. In the course of this week, she will be back home. But remember, it all depends on her plans,” he said.

The Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Reuben Abati, who also spoke on the matter, dismissed Mrs Jonathan’s widely reported illness as a rumour.

Abati insisted that the story “was a rumour and there is nothing like that”.