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Gernot Rohr, Head coach of Nigeria has revealed that he has already mapped out his starting XI that will tackle Guinea in Wednesday’s 2019 Africa Cup of Nations, AFCON, Group B fixture.

The Germany tactician stated that only fittest Super Eagles players will start against the Syli Stars, adding that a victory for the three times African champions will seal Nigeria’s qualification into the competition’s next round.

Nigeria head to the match after defeating Burundi 1-0 over the weekend, while Guinea played a draw against Madagascar.

Addressing a press conference on Tuesday morning in Egypt, Rohr said: “Yesterday’s afternoon we put together already the team who could start eventually in this crucial game against Guinea because if we win it we are already through to the next round of the competition. That would be wonderful you know.

“At the moment the atmosphere is very good. The players are recovering and we will also prepare specially for those that are sick and to try to come back in good fitness.

“We had a very good training session this morning. We had a recovery program for the players who played more than 45 minutes against Burundi on Saturday.

“We had a big work which dwelled on physical and technical training for the other players too.”

The kick-off time for the match is 3:30 pm.


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Diani Reef Beach Resort and Spa is practically making waves and moving mountain to become 'Africa's Leading Beach Destination'; as stated by Patrick Oketch. Diani Beach has further strengthened its partnership with Silverstone Air to foster domestic tourism as the high season for tourism begins in July.

The new package that runs up to December this year, will allow the domestic traveler to save 30 percent off the normal flight and accommodation rate to enjoy 2 nights’ stay on half-board basis, return flights from Nairobi’s Wilson Airport to Ukunda’s Diani Airport, return airport transfers, complimentary gym and swimming pool use along with a 15 percent discount on beverages and spa treatments.

“This is a great partnership with one of the leading domestic airlines in the country. We believe it will be beneficial to local tourists since they are saving up to 25 percent from the usual rates. At the same time, Diani has a lot to offer to be Africa’s leading beach destination. We urge Kenyans to take advantage and enjoy this special offer as the high season kicks off in July.”According to Bobby Kamani, Managing Director, Diani Reef Beach Resort and Spa, the new package has been introduced to encourage the domestic traveler to enjoy affordable rates as well as have the opportunity to visit Africa’s leading beach destination.

At the same time, Patrick Oketch, Sales and Marketing Manager, Silverstone Air said: “We are most pleased to work with our preferred partners on the South Coast, the Diani Reef Beach Resort & Spa. Together, we have launched a discounted fly and stay package for the domestic market. This is a very special package which will enable Kenyans to take advantage of visiting the award-winning Diani Beach, which is well and truly Africa’s Leading Beach Destination. Our association with Diani Reef is a long – term and fruitful one. We look forward to working with such partners in all regions of operation within the country”.

Last year Diani Reef was feted by World Travel Awards as Africa’s Leading Beach Resort and was recently awarded the five star status by Kenya’s Tourism Regulatory Authority.


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Austrian lender Erste Group said on Tuesday it would set aside up to 230 million euros (£205 million) for a lost legal case in Romania.

The provision comes as a result of a Romanian High Court decision concerning the business activities of local building society BCR BpL, a subsidiary of Erste Group’s subsidiary BCR, the bank said.

The court ruled that BCR BpL did not comply with legal requirements for paying state subsidies to build society clients, overturning a lower court ruling, an Erste Group spokesman said.

“This ruling was a big surprise for us,” he said, adding that BCR BpL will wait for the court to disclose its justification before deciding how to further defend its rights.

Erste Group said that despite this negative one-off effect it is still aiming for a return on tangible equity of above 11% in the 2019 financial year due to strong operating and risk performance so far this year.

Erste Group’s shares traded 1.94% lower at 31.87 euros at 0830 GMT, while the European sector index was down 1.03%.


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SpaceX launched its Falcon Heavy rocket on Tuesday from Kennedy Space Center in Florida, carrying 24 experimental satellites in what Elon Musk’s rocket company called one of the most difficult launches it has attempted.

The craft blasted off to cheers from onlookers at 2:30 a.m. (0630 GMT) after a three-hour delay from the original launch time late Monday.

The boosters separated safely as the craft began its six-hour mission to deploy the satellites.

The two-side booster rockets returned safely to Earth, landing on adjacent Air Force landing pads, but the rocket’s center booster missed its mark, crashing in the Atlantic ocean.

Musk, who predicted trouble with landing the center booster on SpaceX’s drone ship in the Atlantic, said on Twitter early Tuesday, “It was a long shot.”

The mission, dubbed Space Test Program 2 (STP-2), is the third for the Falcon Heavy rocket, which SpaceX describes as the most powerful launch system in the world.

It was commissioned by the U.S. Department of Defense, the key contractor for commercial space companies such as SpaceX.

The company is putting satellites into orbit for agencies including NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), defense department laboratories, universities and a non-profit organization, SpaceX said.

The mission is one of the most challenging in SpaceX history, with four separate upper-stage engine burns and three separate orbits to deploy satellites, the company said on its website.

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What’s it like to retire at 33?

“Every day is like a Sunday where I don’t have chores, and I have all this free time and can do what I want.”

That’s the synopsis from Justin McCurry, a Raleigh, N.C. resident who swapped life as an engineer for early retirement five years ago. Far from subsisting on rice and beans, McCurry eats “5-star meals” made from scratch at home, vacations with his family and spends time outdoors hiking and swimming.

Justin McCurry retired five years ago, at 33, as a self-made millionaire. He and his wife spent 10 years growing their investment portfolio to $1.3 million, though she continued to bring in an income and didn't fully retire until 2016. McCurry said they were able to build a solid nest egg because they had good jobs with benefits, employed smart tax strategies, maxed out their retirement savings accounts, invested, budgeted, and bought an affordable home during an auction. (He says their portfolio has since grown to over $1.7 million.)

But life in early retirement brought a bit of a shock to McCurry, who runs the blog Root of Good, which brings in some monthly income for the couple. He previously told Business Insider that he wished he knew it would take him at least six months to calm down, relax, and slow down after retiring.

"It took me at least that long to feel comfortable doing nothing," said McCurry, who most recently worked as an engineering manager earning about $69,000 before retiring.

"I felt like I had to be productive for at least part of the day," he said. "Eventually, I realized that this is the rest of my life to enjoy it! I upped the time I spent in my hammock, caught up on my Netflix queue, and read a bunch of books."

His days are a mix of fun, time outdoors, and 'a small dose of work'

To figure out how to fill up his free time (and help others do the same), McCurry created a weekly schedule for his early retirement. It's evidence that early retirement can be just as diverse as the typical workweek, if not more so. No two days for McCurry are the same, and he's found more time to indulge in things that make him happy.

"Fortunately we live in the 21st century, a glorious time filled with entertainment overload, instant digital connections, and unlimited choices of pastimes (indoors and outside)," he wrote on his blog. "Each day typically has a mix of a lot of fun, a moderate dose of physical activity, and a small dose of work."

McCurry divides his days into five categories: work, meals, physical, fun, and social. On a weekly basis, he spends roughly 7 1/2 hours with family or friends, 13 hours working (whether it's yard work or personal-finance chores), 18 hours doing some sort of physical activity, such as swimming, and 35 1/2 hours having fun, which could be planning vacations, reading, or blogging.

"Early retirement is like a full-time job where tasks consist solely of having fun and socializing," he wrote. "Everyone has their own definition of fun and their ideal level of socializing each week. I like a lot of solitary activities but also enjoy the company of other people."

Here's an example of a Friday in which he was able to incorporate all five categories into his schedule:

7:30 a.m.: Work wake up and get ready 8 a.m.: Physical walk to school and drop off his kids 8:30 a.m.: Physical walk to the park 9 a.m.: Work teach ABC's to his toddler 9:30 a.m.: Social play date with his toddler Noon: Meals lunch 1 p.m.: Work grocery shopping 2 p.m.: Work internet chores 3 p.m.: Physical walk to school to pick up the kids 3:30 p.m.: Physical adventure time, which can range from visiting the park to exploring a nature reserve 6:30 p.m.: Meals dinner 7:30 p.m.: Fun video games and Netflix

"I realized I felt happy and fulfilled when I had a whole lot of leisure activities plus a small amount of 'work' and intellectual stimulation during the week," he told Business Insider.

McCurry says he tries to spread the work out no more than an hour or two per day. He added that sometimes he gets passionate about an idea and spends a few days absorbed in a new project, such as learning Adobe Photoshop or foreign languages.

"So far I haven't experienced any boredom in early retirement," he wrote on his blog. "But if I do, my first action will be to search for new activities to jump into."

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James Copnall | Published in History Today Volume 69 Issue 7 July 2019

On 11 April 2019, Sudan’s President Omar al-Bashir was overthrown by a popular revolution ending almost three decades in power. After tens of thousands of protesters encircled the military headquarters in the capital Khartoum, ten generals stepped in to remove their former boss, establishing a Transitional Military Council, ostensibly to pave the way for civilian rule. The young protesters had braved tear gas, truncheons and bullets throughout the country; they were following in the footsteps of their parents and grandparents, who had toppled unpopular military leaders in 1964 and 1985. In deposing Bashir, the protesters had achieved what rebel groups, foreign pressure and even indictments for genocide from the International Criminal Court had not managed.

The Sudanese are proud of their revolutionary history, and rightly so – but previous revolutions did not bring about the change the country desperately needed.

One nation?

Sudan was always an awkward colonial creation: diverse peoples with histories of mutual antagonism and exploitation (including slavery) were crammed together at the whim of Turkish and then British and Egyptian colonial masters in 1899. The south saw itself as African, while the political elite in the north defined itself (and the nation) by its Arab origins. In the colonial period, Christian missionaries were allowed to work in southern Sudan, creating further differences with the north, which is overwhelmingly Muslim.

The north – or, to be more precise, the riverine elite from north of Khartoum – has dominated politically throughout Sudan’s history. Successive governments have positioned the state as Arab and Muslim, despite the huge variety of cultures within what was – until South Sudan’s independence in 2011 – Africa’s biggest country.

The first shots of the First Sudanese Civil War were fired in 1955, just before Sudan’s independence in 1956. That conflict ended in a compromise in 1972. The Second Civil War, which broke out in 1985, was even longer and bloodier. Bashir’s time in office, after he removed a democratic government in a coup in 1989, had been characterized by conflict and massive human rights abuses. After taking power, he stepped up the war in southern Sudan, in which it is estimated that over two million people died. A peace deal in 2005 stopped the bleeding, but to nobody’s surprise southerners voted almost unanimously to secede in 2011. South Sudan’s independence did not solve Sudan’s problems. Conflicts broke out in the Nuba Mountains and Blue Nile, areas which had fought alongside the south in the Second Civil War, but were north of the border at separation. Bashir used divisive rhetoric, stating ‘there will be no question of cultural and ethnic diversity’ in Sudan.

The conflict in Darfur – which began in 2003 as an uprising against the government’s treatment of the region’s non-Arab population – rapidly became the worst humanitarian situation in the world. The US described it as genocide but took no meaningful action to stop it. Bashir used what Alex de Waal described as ‘counter-insurgency on the cheap’, a combination of air power, armed forces and locally recruited ethnic militias, the feared Janjaweed. They were recruited from ‘Arab’ groups, seen as loyal to Khartoum, as opposed to ‘African’ ethnic groups like the Fur, Zaghawa, and the Masalit, who made up the bulk of the rebel forces. Revolts were dealt with using extreme force. Bashir took power promising to Islamise Sudan, using Islamist language and stating that he would govern the country through Islamic principles. From 1999 onwards, this was pure rhetoric – the only real objective was keeping power.


Sudan’s third revolution began in the northern town of Atbara in December 2018. Local officials had removed a wheat subsidy and the price of bread – a Sudanese staple – tripled overnight. Angry crowds burned the local offices of Bashir’s National Congress Party. The economy had been in decline for years, with inflation reaching over 70 percent. One cause was the secession of South Sudan. When the southerners left, they took three-quarters of oil production with them. Oil is Sudan’s main export earner.

Bashir and officials complained that the economic issues were the result of bad luck, poor world oil prices, and American sanctions – though the economy did not revive after the latter was removed in 2017. Sudan’s problems were political in making. It is estimated that Bashir’s government spent 60-70 percent of its budget on the security sector in an attempt to buy the loyalty of the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) and other armed groups. In addition, Sudan’s toxic politics – including Bashir’s indictments from the International Criminal Court for crimes against humanity – made it impossible to get relief on Sudan’s debt (well over $50 billion), or obtain new loans from the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank.

After the demonstrators took to the streets in Atbara, protests spread to other towns across the country. On 25 December 2018, a new body, the Sudanese Professionals Association (SPA), made up of doctors, lawyers and journalists, attempted to deliver a petition to the presidential palace in Khartoum calling on Bashir and his government to step down. On 1 January, the SPA, along with several other political and social groups, signed the Declaration of Freedom and Change, calling for Bashir to be replaced by a transitional government to end civil wars, rethink the constitution and put the state back on its feet. Protests about the crumbling economy had become political. The slogan on the streets was ‘Tasgut, Bess’ (‘Fall, that’s all’).

The uprising has often been portrayed as a sort of delayed Arab Spring. This infuriates the protesters. The Sudanese have overthrown unwanted military rulers twice before. In the 1964 October Revolution, Ibrahim Abboud agreed to step down. Protests had intensified following the death of a student demonstrator, Ahmed al Quraishi. The Sudanese historian Yusuf Fadl Hasan praised ‘the determination and moral force with which unarmed citizens, led by the intelligentsia, brought military force to an end’. Just over 20 years later, mass protests broke out against another military leader, Jaafar Nimeiry. He had come to power in a coup in 1969. Just as in the current uprising, the trigger was the economy. On 6 April 1985, the military stepped in, before handing power to civilians. This history has informed every attempt by the Sudanese to protest since 1989.

The end of Bashir

Bashir’s response was a mixture of intimidation, cajoling, and propaganda. Dozens of protesters were shot dead. Hundreds were arrested. Officials accepted the demonstrators’ economic frustrations but sought to blame the peaceful uprising on Darfuri rebels, using the well-worn politics of division. It didn’t work. ‘We are all Darfuris’, the protesters chanted. By February, as the protests showed no sign of abating, Bashir became desperate. He sacked his government, declaring a nationwide state of emergency. It was not enough. The protesters wanted nothing less than an end to the Bashir years. On 6 April – the 34th anniversary of the overthrow of Nimeiry – a massive demonstration met outside military headquarters in central Khartoum. ‘We thought we were going to be killed’, said one protester. ‘But instead, we were able to get all the way to the army headquarters.’ Over the following days, security agents made intermittent attempts to dislodge them, using live ammunition. But members of SAF fired back. Ordinary soldiers were unable to countenance the massacre of civilian protesters, following the example of previous generations of soldiers in Sudanese revolutions. When President Bashir reportedly told his closest confidants that he was prepared to stomach a massacre if it kept him in power, the senior generals decided to act. In the early hours of 11 April, they blocked Bashir’s means of communication, changed the troops at the presidential residence and informed him that he had been overthrown.

The subsequent military council’s willingness to hand over power to civilians is the great remaining question. A deal has seemed close at points. The civilian protesters insist on a civilian-led government. The military has accepted the need for a civilian parliament, led by a civilian prime minister. The great sticking point is the composition of a ‘sovereign council’, a supreme body above the Cabinet. Both the military and the civilians want to be in the majority. Saudi Arabia and the UAE are encouraging the military to hold firm, as is Egypt. Western countries, led by the US, the UK and Norway, have called for a swift handover to a civilian administration.

Third time lucky?

The protesters knew that, as soon as they left their sit-in outside the military headquarters, ‘our revolution would be over’, as one puts it. So they stayed, creating a mini-city in a matter of weeks: a stage for announcements and concerts; any number of speaker’s corners to discuss politics and Sudan’s age-old problems of racism and tribalism; barricades where anyone coming to the protest was searched; a system for removing waste; doctors on call; even a school for street children. Revolutionaries discussed the sort of society they want Sudan to become. In the early hours of 3 June, Transitional Military Council forces swept in to chase away the protesters and closed their sit-in. The protesters promised to step up civil disobedience to achieve their goal of a civilian government. The final chapter of Sudan’s third revolution is still unwritten, but it is impossible to dispute what it has already achieved.

James Copnall is the author of A Poisonous Thorn in Our Hearts: Sudan and South Sudan’s Bitter and Incomplete Divorce (Hurst, 2014).

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Roger Hudson: Published in History Today Volume 66 Issue 1 January 2016

It is February 1966 and the army and police have just staged a coup (codenamed ‘Cold Chop’) toppling Ghana’s autocratic President-for-Life, Kwame Nkrumah, while he is in the Far East on a vainglorious mission to end the Vietnam War. He has grown increasingly authoritarian and remote since the start of the decade, calling himself successively the Redeemer, Man of Destiny, Star of Africa, High Dedication, while his country’s economy succumbs to the corruption and incompetence of its state agencies.  

The British colony of the Gold Coast became Ghana in 1957, the first sub-Saharan African nation to achieve independence from its European master, several years before Harold Macmillan made the ‘Winds of Change’ speech that signaled the wholesale end of Empire. That it was a trailblazer was due to its valuable cocoa export crop and, much more, to its charismatic leader, with his great organizing ability. After time at university in the US and at the London School of Economics, Nkrumah returned in 1947 and campaigned for the ending of British rule. In 1950 he was imprisoned as leader of a wave of civil disobedience but the following year he was released to become the Gold Coast’s first prime minister after his party’s election victory. 

The orthodoxy among development economists of the time was that only the state, not markets, could bring economic transformation and Nkrumah thought so, too: ‘Capitalism is too complicated a system for a newly independent nation. Hence the need for a socialistic society.’ After independence, marketing boards for cocoa, timber, and diamonds were set up as well as many other state bodies. This put a huge measure of control in Nkrumah’s hands, with all the jobs, contracts and licenses that could be handed out to cement political support. Cocoa farmers could sell only to the Marketing Board, which kept the price low because its revenues were desperately needed to cover losses elsewhere and to service foreign loans. Predictably, the quantity smuggled out shot up. 

The unrest began in 1960 and, after bombs went off in Accra, there were concerns in the House of Commons about the Queen’s projected visit. Macmillan was desperate not to cancel it for fear of driving Nkrumah into Soviet arms and the Queen took the same view, so it went ahead in 1961, though at the state banquet there were empty places meant for political opponents who had been jailed as a precaution. As political arrests became a regular feature, all the British officers helping train the army were told to leave. By 1964 Ghana was a one-party state and corruption was out of control, as was Nkrumah’s personality cult. His crowning folly was a palace with 60 luxury suites and a banqueting hall for 2,000 built in 1965.

For most of the ten years following the coup Ghana was run by generals, more corrupt even than their predecessors, the civilian ‘big men’. Then in 1975 junior officers led by half-Scottish Flight-Lieutenant Jerry Rawlings took control, executing eight senior officers, including three former heads of state, in public and flogging profiteers. From the lowest of bases things gradually got better. Rawlings remained Ghana’s most powerful man until 2000 when his anointed successor lost the election. From then up to 2014 annual GDP growth averaged 7.4 percent, regular presidential elections have continued, while in 2007 there was a major offshore oil and gas discovery. 

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South Africa (Bafana Bafana), is back in the continent’s flagship tournament after missing out in 2017, but face a difficult assignment in Egypt starting Monday having been drawn alongside 2015 champions Ivory Coast and a strong Morocco side coached by two-time Cup of Nations winner Herve Renard, as well as Namibia in Group D.

These countries resume a rivalry 21 years after drawing 1-1 in Burkina Faso, and a similar outcome at the Al Salam Stadium would not be surprising as neither side dare loose.

“As much as every team wants to win its first tournament match, it is crucial not to lose because it puts you on the back foot immediately,” says South Africa coach Stuart Baxter.

While Ivory Coast has a potential matchwinner in Pepe from Ligue 1 runners-up Lille, South Africa hope Percy Tau can rise to the occasion after a season in the Belgian second division.

The slightly-built attacker was signed by Premier League outfit Brighton last season, lent to Royale Union Saint-Gilloise in Belgium, and his brace against Libya ensured qualification for Egypt.

South Africa had a puzzling build-up with Baxter rejecting a chance to play in a regional championship, then complaining that he had only one warm-up match, a draw against Ghana.

Ivory Coast vs South Africa: Prediction, head-to-head and TV stream


Considering South Africa is more known for showboating rather than actually performing, it’s perhaps surprising that Ivory Coast has a win probability of just 45%. The draw is the second most likely outcome and South Africa winning is given just a 25% chance.

Ivory Coast has won 80% of their last five matches, South Africa just 67%.

The Ivorians have, however, had a bit of a dip in form since last winning the Africa Cup of Nations in 2015.  They were booted out in the group stages last time out and failed to qualify for the 2018 World Cup in Russia. But, South Africa hasn’t done much better.

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Reuters: The United Nations said on Thursday it had confirmed the killing of 17 people and the burning of more than 100 houses in Deleij village in the Darfur region of Sudan earlier this week.

The United Nations-African Union Mission in Darfur also said 15 people were injured and the violence “occurred during heated clashes between nomads and residents apparently angered by the increase in commodity prices at the local market”.

Opposition medics said “Janjaweed militias” fired live ammunition at civilians on Monday at a market in Deleij, Central Darfur, killing 11 people and wounding 20 others.

The Janjaweed are Arab militias who have been accused of committing atrocities in Darfur, in the west of Sudan, during a civil conflict that started in 2003 and, according to U.N. estimates, has killed up to 300,000 people and displaced 2.7 million.

Ousted President Omar al-Bashir’s government denied the allegations on Darfur.

Janjaweed fighters were incorporated into Sudan’s paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF), which have been the dominant force in the capital Khartoum since Bashir was overthrown on April 11.

The deputy head of the military council that took power after Bashir left, Lieutenant General Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, heads the RSF.

Witnesses said the RSF led a raid on a protest sit-in in Khartoum on June 3 that left dozens dead and led to the collapse of talks between the military council and protest and opposition groups pushing for a democratic transition.

The military council has said forces moved in to deal with disruptive groups near the sit-in and the violence spread from there. It also said that some RSF members had been attacked and that people had put on their uniforms to impersonate them in an attempt to harm their reputation.

This week Amnesty International said it had new evidence showing that “Sudanese government forces, including the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) and allied militias, have continued to commit war crimes and other serious human rights violations in Darfur”.

At least 45 villages were completely or partially destroyed in the past year, Amnesty said.

“In Darfur, as in Khartoum, we’ve witnessed the Rapid Support Forces’ despicable brutality against Sudanese civilians – the only difference being, in Darfur they have committed atrocities with impunity for years,” said Amnesty Secretary General Kumi Naidoo.

“There are no Janjaweed elements currently in the national capital,” said Major General Osman Mohamed Hamid, the RSF’s operations commander.

“The Janjaweed are elements that were found in the period of armed movements in Darfur. These elements do not belong to a certain category, do not belong to a certain tribe,” he said on Al-Hadath TV on Tuesday.

“They are elements rebelling against the law, harming every person in Darfur. [They are] elements that have no leadership, no structure.”

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'Wife of the president' has officially been deleted from the title of Mrs. Aisha Buhari as she announced on Thursday, her decision to be addressed as the First Lady of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

This is coming five years after then-candidate Muhammadu Buhari said there would be no office of the first lady for his wife, Aisha.

Since Mr. Buhari’s first term inauguration as president, the presidency has referred to Mrs. Buhari’s office has ‘office of the wife of the president.’

The previous title obviously didn't appeal to her plus she felt it was a confusing title when referring to the title of wives of governors.

Mrs. Buhari further said that her new title would take effect immediately. She hoped that the action would also resolve the issue of the title of wives of governors.

Mrs. Buhari disclosed her new official title at the presentation of awards to the former and current wives of governors of the 36 states. The event was held at the Banquet Hall of the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

“When my husband was elected newly I personally chose to be called the wife of the President.

“But, I realized 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.

Buhari’s Pledge

Mrs. Buhari’s announcement could be a departure from her husband’s promise while contesting in 2014 that he would not have an office of the first lady.

Mr. Buhari said so in an interview with Weekly Trust in December 2014. Then-candidate Buhari said such office is not provided for in the constitution and the Ministry for Women Affairs should be allowed to play its role unhindered.

Aisha Buhari then also pledged to be addressed as the wife of the president.

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