Kebbi Governor, Atiku Bagudu’s Two Wives At War Over Office of The First Lady

Insert pics above from left Hajia Aisha, and Dr Zainab Bagudu right
Insert pics above from left Hajia Aisha, and Dr Zainab Bagudu right
As Kebbi State governor Atiku Bagudu battles the myriad of problems in the state, he will have to contend with another at home as his two wives battle each other, in their quest to occupy the office of the governor’s wife.

Bagudu has been in office for less than 100 days but the office of the first lady is still vacant, as the two wives now claim to be the legal occupant of the controversial office.

Hajia Aisha Bagudu and Dr. Zainab Bagudu, are both using the logo and letter headed paper of the Kebbi State office of the First Lady with their official cars carrying the insignia of the wife of the governor of Kebbi state also.

The inability of the governor to choose who will occupy the position among his two wives appears to be affecting the operations of the office of the First Lady in the state.

Dr Zainab Bagudu accompanied the governor during his pre-election campaign tours. Sources said the governor had earlier planned to appoint Zainab as the first lady considering her contributions to his campaign but was at a crossroad after the visible closeness of Hajia Aisha Bagudu to women at the grassroots came to light, especially her robust relationships with the mallams and locals in the state.

A source in the governor’s office disclosed that after Bagudu was sworn in, he had instructed that the letter headed paper for the office of the first lady should be printed for Zainab.

Gov. Bagudu
Gov. Bagudu

“But after the governor travelled to Abuja and returned, he changed his mind and directed that the letter headed paper for the office of the first lady should be printed for his two wives.”

This is reported to be generating tension in the family.

Sources disclosed that the situation assumed a messier dimension a few weeks back, when Governor Bagudu instructed his wives to proceed to the government house and choose their accommodation wing. This was said to have sparked a heated argument, which then degenerated into a fisticuff between Zainab and Aisha.

A source who witnessed the fight, disclosed that the timely intervention of security aides, prevented the warring wives from battering each other.

It was reliably gathered that Bagudu was livid when he learnt of the fight. He was said to have sworn not to move to the government house.

The governor now operates mostly from his house, according to sources.

Some top government functionaries that commented on the first lady crisis advised the governor to appoint the wife of the deputy governor as the first lady, since he is afraid to offend his wives by appointing one of them as the first lady.

They maintained that the crisis was affecting the image of the government and that the state would not participate at the meeting of governors’ wives forum because of the crisis.

They fear that the issue could affect Kebbi State’s meagre funds. “With two first ladies in the state, it is clear that the funds of Kebbi meant for development will be used for sponsoring the activities of the two wives. Each of the wives has aides attached to her and this will cost the state a lot of money as allowances to the aides.”

Already the Kebbi first lady tussle has started raising dusts. Women groups are sharply divided and have arrayed themselves in different camps with each group struggling to outwit the other.

Some concerned Kebbi State women are appealing to the governor to resolve the crisis on time, in order to enable women groups in the state to operate under one umbrella with only one leader as the first lady of the state.

According to a respectable a reliable in the state, “ Hajia Aisha is the first wife, she struggled with the governor when there was nothing. She has always been in the fore front of her husband’s campaign to the senate, not minding her limited educational background.”

“ She is familiar with the terrain in Kebbi and the locals feel at home with her, so there’s no way she won’t play the role of first lady in the state”.

Meanwhile, it is gathered that Dr Zainab Bagudu relates more with the affluent women in the state. She is a pediatric doctor, based in Abuja, where she owns a diagnostic center. She represented the state during the Ramadan dinner last month hosted by the first lady, Aisha Buhari at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

Last week, a group known as Women Coalition Group (WCG) in Kebbi, appealed to the Kebbi State Governor, Alhaji Atiku Bagudu, not to scrap office of the first lady in spite of the feud over the office among his wives.

Hajiya Fatima Mustapha, who is the state chairperson of the association, made the appeal in Birnin Kebbi, the state capital, according to her, the office of the first Lady during democratic regime is important as it caters for the women and children in society.

“As a woman, I am duty bound to make a plea on behalf of all women in the state to beg the governor not to abolish this good office because it empowers the women folk and assist the children especially the less privileged ones”, she said.

“What Governor Bagudu needs to do is to sit with his wives and resolve the issue amicably for the interest of Kebbi women. I also appeal to wives of the governor to sheath their swords on the ongoing saga over the first lady slot”, Hajiya Mustapha concluded.

It appears that the twosome will be performing the role jointly as Dr Zainab will be assigned to duties in Abuja, while Hajia Aisha will be in the state, according to a top aide of the governor.

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