After four years of operating as “wife of the president”, Aisha Buhari has announced her decision to be addressed as First Lady of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
Speaking at the presentation of awards to governors’ wives in Abuja on Thursday, Mrs Buhari said the new arrangement takes immediate effect to resolve the issue of the title of wives of governors.
“When my husband was newly elected, I personally chose to be called the wife of the president.
“But, I realised that it causes confusion from the state as to whether the wives of state governors are to be addressed as the first ladies or wives of the governors.
“So, forgive me for confusing you from the beginning, but now I chose to be called the first lady,” she said.
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General Muhammadu Buhari, who was then seeking to be elected Nigeria’s president, had in December 2014 gone on record to say he would abolish the office of the first lady if he was elected, claiming it was unconstitutional.
President Buhari, however, made no move to abolish the office after assuming the presidency on May 29, 2015.
Instead, his wife moved into the office occupied by her predecessors who bore the title of first lady while she was addressed as wife of the president.
She also accepted the position of head of African first ladies three months into her husband’s presidency.