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Celebrating African First Ladies: Nigeria's Aisha Buhari (1099 hits)

Often described as mothers to the nations their husbands lead, Africa’s first ladies are often expected to be unifying figures, serving the president of the nation and the voters who entrusted him the mandate to lead.

A first lady by definition is the wife of the head of state, and it therefore follows that most African nations led by a male president, has a first lady.

As of March 2019, all African countries have male heads of state. The last female head of state who led an African nation was Liberia’s Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, whose tenure expired in January 2018.

Across the continent, several first ladies have been recognised, applauded and sometimes vilified for the roles they play to support the politics of their husbands.

As we celebrate women in the month of March, Africanews shall publish the profiles and work of different African first ladies, highlighting their politics and activism among other issues.

In this article, published on International Women’s Day, March 8, 2019, we profile Nigeria’s Aisha Buhari.
First Lady of the week: Nigeria’s Aisha Buhari

- Full name / age: Aisha Muhammadu Buhari / 48 years old
- Profession: Beautician, entrepreneur and publisher
- Politics: Vocal critic of the former government, of Buhari and some of his appointees
- Advocacy: Women and Children’s Rights activist, head of “Future Assured Foundation.”
- Family: Wife to Buhari since 1989, has five children with Buhari.


The office of First Lady

While the position of first lady is not legally or constitutionally provided for in many countries, many presidencies cater for the Office of the First Lady, through which the holder is facilitated to implement projects towards social causes, and often influence policy.

The Organisation of African First Ladies for Development (OAFLAD), created in 2002, brings together First Ladies of Africa ‘to advocate for policies that make health services accessible and laws that boost women and youth empowerment’.

‘‘First Ladies of Africa reinforce favorable policies and programs through advocacy, resource mobilization and development of partnerships with all stakeholders at all levels,’‘ reads part of the statement on the OAFLAD website.

OAFLAD is currently led by First Lady of Burkina Faso, Adjoavi Sika Kabore, who is deputised by her Kenyan counterpart Margaret Kenyatta.

https://www.africanews.com/
Posted By: Elly Moss
Friday, March 8th 2019 at 11:09AM
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