He is a retired general and people from that walk of life are considered stiff. President Muhammadu Buhari was seen as the ‘worst’ of this class. But he proved on Monday that he has a soft side. All thanks to the 30th anniversary of his marriage to Aisha.
Buhari wished his wife Aisha happy 30th wedding anniversary on Monday.
On his official Twitter handle @MBuhari, the president at exactly 8:33 am wrote: “Today, on our 30th Wedding Anniversary, I pray for Allah’s continued peace and blessings in our home and family,” a message that has generated 3,634 retweets and 19,600 likes as of 7:28 pm.
Buhari’s message which was accompanied by a throwback picture of himself and Aisha as well as a family photo with their children, was complemented by a 58-minute video of the First Family showing happy moments as well as a verse from the Qur’an 78:8 which read “And We created you in pairs,” which Aisha shared on her verified Instagram page.
Betraying no emotions nor the usual hypocritical niceties most celebrity families exhibited on such occasions to paint a fairy-tale marriage in the minds of their followers; the first family’s ‘unusual’ anniversary posts attracted mixed reactions.
While some commenters described the president’s tweet as unromantic, formal and a pointer that all was not well at home; others believed that the First Family has always been reserved and fed not much private information to the public.
Married in December 1989, about five years after Buhari left office as military ruler, the union is blessed with five children- Aisha, Halima, Yusuf, Zahra and Amina, in addition to five other children Buhari had with his late first wife Safinatu.
Like every relationship, the first couple might have had their high and low times, some of which many Nigerians would have loved to get insights into. Although no such detail was given, thousands of social media users facilitated with them yesterday.
One of such well-wishers was Bilkisu Sheikh wrote: “Mashaa Allahu, you have come a long way. May Allah continue to guide and protect both your marriage and family. Happy Wedding Anniversary Ma. Are you sure? I feel the president doesn’t love you again. But that isn’t fair. You are a kind woman and with ladies like you, Nigeria will be great again. You have a great feminine virtue and many will learn from you.”
Olushola Olufolabi said: “Congratulations madam, may God continue to bless your home and we use yours as a point of contact to pray for Leah Sharibu to one day celebrate a happy fruitful marriage anniversary with her husband.
Mobolaje Shina said: “Congratulations on your 30th wedding anniversary, may Allah continue to bless your home. However, I will like to use this medium to send you to Mr President to do something about the economy. Many of us who ought to be married are being incapacitated by the harsh economic situation.”
Abdullahi Haruna wrote: “Take a flash back of all the pretty and beautiful moments that you have spent with your partner and that will make you smile. Wish you both a very happy anniversary mummy.”
Issa Sodiq Ishola: “A wise woman keeps her home together, despite all odds and with Allah’s mercy, this couple remains bond till this moment.
“I pray Almighty Allah continue to shower more blessings on this couple and grant them more understanding.”
Adetola Kehinde: “Happy wedding anniversary to you sir. I pray for good health for you and every member of your family.”
Kazeem Adeshina: “Happy anniversary Daddy. More years to celebrate in good health and peace of mind.”
Kabir Muktar: “MashaAllah, I wish you peace, good health and more blissful years ahead. You are a family that will always be in our mind for the good that you have been doing to all Nigerians. History will never forget you, Sir! May Almighty continuously bless your family. Happy Anniversary.”
A second wife that never was
In October while Mrs Buhari was in London, there were rumours that the president was taking a second wife.
According to merchants of fake news, all was set for the wedding at the Central Mosque in Abuja. Invitation cards were printed and circulated on social media. Dress code and other wedding details were worked out. Many were waiting for the wedding of the century and not a few felt the President was now ready to “deal with Aisha”, who has openly criticised his government and once said some people had taken over the reins of power.
There was also a viral video in which the First Lady was shouting at security agents for allegedly locking a door to prevent her from disrupting the planned wedding. “Enough is enough” was her bitter assertion in the video. There were also videos of a bride dancing and being sprayed with crispy notes at a traditional wedding party. And there were pseudo witnesses who claimed to be witnesses of truth. In fact, all was set Thursday night for a wedding eve party to be attended by the President’s men. It was all fake.
At the time of the rumours, the supposed bride-to-be, Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development Sadiya Umar Farouq, was in New York, United States (U.S.) on official assignment.