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Women You Should Know: Turai Yar’adua

The First Lady of Nigeria is informal, but an accepted title, held by the wife of the President of Nigeria as long as He is in the office of the President. Though there is no constitutional provision for such an office in Nigeria, there, however, has been official funding and staff allocation to the office of the First Lady of Nigeria since the country’s independence. The First Lady is addressed by the title, Her Excellency.

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Turai YarAdu’a: The Spine to a Beloved Gentleman

It is quite scarce and rare to find a Nigerian that has held a grudge against Umaru Musa YarAdua; Nigeria’s President that passed on while on a medical trip. The man has been regarded as an epitome of gentlemanliness, integrity, humility, national spiritedness amongst so many other attributes. But as the maxim goes ‘behind every successful man is a woman’, Turai YarAdua could be said to be instrumental to her husband’s disposition and outlook to life. Regarded as a woman that was frequently seen as a First lady but hardly heard, she is perceived to be very influential in government and over her husband, President Umaru Musa Yar’ Adua. Turai was rumoured to be one of her husband’s closest advisors during his tenure as President of Nigeria. For example, Yar’Adua is believed to have influenced the choice of Professor Babatunde Osotimehin, the former Director-General of the National Action Committee on AIDS, as Nigeria’s Minister of Health during her husband’s administration.

Public Influence

Hajia Yar’Adua had a heart for handicapped children while in the position of the First Lady. She was frequently at hand in programs and events that were concerned with that group of people. Often times, she urged members of the society, governments at all levels to engage in formulating policies and programmes that would make living more meaningful to them. She urged Nigerians to be committed to the enlistment of the physically challenged in society and be ready to lend a helping hand to them.

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Background and Education

Hajiya Turai Umar Musa Yar’Adua was born on the 26th of July 1957. She is the widow of former Nigerian President and former Katsina State Governor Umaru Musa Yar’Adua. She was the First Lady of Nigeria from 2007 until the death of her husband, President Yar’Adua, on May 5, 2010.

Turai Yar’Adua was born in the Katsina metropolitan area of northern Nigeria in July 1957. She attended Government Girls Secondary School in Kankiya as a child. Turai Yar’Adua attended Garama Primary School in Katsina and Government Secondary School in Kankia, both in Katsina State. She later enrolled at Katsina College of Arts, Science and Technology in Zaria, Kaduna State, where she was reportedly named “best student” in 1980. In 1983, Yar’Adua received a bachelor’s degree in Language from Ahmadu Bello University. Turai married Umaru Yar’Adua in 1975 and together, they had five daughters and two sons. Her two sons are Shehu Umaru Musa Yar’adua and Musa Umar Musa Yar’adua, Shehu is the name of late President Umaru Musa Yar’adua brother and retired Nigerian Army major general who served as the Chief of Staff, Supreme Headquarters under General Olusegun Obasanjo‘s 1976 – 1979 military government.




Featured Image Source: Wikipedia

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Jeremiah Aluwong

Jeremiah is a scholar and a poet. He has a keen eye for studying the world and is passionate about people. He tweets at @jeremiahaluwong.

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