Aisha Halilu, First Lady of Nigeria (since May 25, 2015)
Aisha Halilu was born in Adamawa state in the family of the first minister of defence, Mohammadu Ribadu. She speaks English and Arabic fluently.
General Buhari married his first wife Hajiya Safinatu when he was 18 in 1971. They divorced in 1988, and a year later, Muhammadu got remarried to Aisha. They have five children together, a boy and four girls – Aisha, Halima, Yusuf, Zarah and Amina. Muhammadu also has five children from his first marriage.
On her husband, Aisha said: “I have been married to Muhammadu Buhari for 25 years now and we are blessed with children and a grandchild.
“My husband is a family-oriented person. He has very close relationships with his children, grandchild, and entire members of the family. He is very caring and protective of us.”
She graduated from the famous Ahmadu Bello university where she earned a bachelors degree in public administration. She also has a postgraduate diploma in cosmetology and beauty, which she received from the Academy Esthetique Beauty Institute of France.
Stella Obasanjo, Former First Lady of Nigeria (died on Oct 23, 2005)
Stella Obasanjo (14 November 1945 – 23 October 2005) was the First Lady of Nigeria from 1999 until her death. She was the wife of former president Olusegun Obasanjo. She was not the First Lady in 1976, when Obasanjo was military head of state. She died while undergoing elective liposuction in an exclusive clinic in Spain.
Stella Obasanjo was from Iruekpen, Esan West, Edo State. Her father, Dr. Christopher Abebe, was chief of the United Africa Company (UAC) and would become the first indigenous (African) chairman of UAC Nigeria. Her mother, Therasa, graduated from Pitman’s College, London.
Stella Abebe began her education at Our Lady of the Apostles Primary School. She enrolled at St. Theresa’s College, where she obtained her West African School Certificate in 1964 with grade one. Two years later she obtained the higher school certificate. She was admitted to the University of Ife, for a bachelor’s degree in English, attending from 1967 to 1969. In 1969 she transferred to the UK to complete her studies, this time round, in insurance, in London and Edinburgh, Scotland, from 1970 to 1974.
She completed her education with a certificate as confidential secretary from the Pitman College in 1976. She returned to Nigeria in 1976 and soon after married General Obasanjo, who had become Head of State and Commander-in-Chief of the Nigerian Armed Forces, following the assassination of General Murtala Mohammed. When she became Nigeria’s First Lady in 1999, following the election of her husband as president, Obasanjo established Child Care Trust, for the care of underprivileged and/or disabled children.
Reporters Without Borders reported that Orobosa Omo-Ojo, the publisher of the Lagos-based Nigerian Midwest Herald, was arrested on Stella Obasanjo’s orders on 2 May 2005 and taken to Akure prison. His arrest was prompted by an article the previous week about her, headlined “Greedy Stella”.
Stella Obasanjo died a few weeks before her 60th birthday from complications of cosmetic surgery at a private health clinic in Puerto Banús, Marbella, Spain, on 23 October 2005. The surgeon, identified only as “AM” in court, was sentenced to one year of imprisonment in September 2009 on a charge of “causing homicide through negligence”, disqualified from medicine for a period of three years and ordered to pay €120,000 (approximately US$176,000) in compensation to Stella Obasanjo’s son.