Awards are ways in which people are honoured. There usually isn’t much to an award. An individual has either done so well to earn the admiration and envy of numerous others, or messed up so horribly that the most appropriate way to deal with this person of interest is simply to cast them into the light. Whichever the case, a spotlight of honour isn’t paraphernalia that many can wear well. Some lose their balls in false humility, others aggregate theirs in new-found pride. The wife of the president wears the spotlight well.
Nigeria’s First Lady, Mrs. Aisha Buhari, wore the spotlight as ‘Woman of the Year’ 2019 at the fourth edition of Voice of Women (VOW) Conference on 19 November 2019 at the NAF Conference Centre, Abuja. The event which was organized by Women Radio in conjunction with the Voice of Women Foundation recognized the contributions of Mother Nigeria in amplifying the voices of women in the country.
Though the award is indisputably grand and validating, those knowledgeable might declare that it is coming a few years too late. That is because Dr. Aisha Buhari has always been passionate about women’s rights and entitlements due to them as citizens of Nigeria, and human beings.
Although she is renowned as an outspoken wife of the president, she has never required the might of her hubby’s office to wring sense out of foolish people and the nasty dogmas they often represent. Take child marriage into consideration. Her prompt and unrelenting actions helped to rest that debacle to an early grave.
While her focus has always been on the girl-child, Dr. Aisha has wielded the twin blades of education and welfare against the maltreatment of children. Whether it is about kwashiorkor in the body of neglected infants or Kwashiorkor in the minds of domestic terrorists, the first madame has shown her mettle as chieftain with her subjects at heart.
And so this time, with the wife of the vice president, Dolapo Oshinbanjo, Ekiti State First Lady, Erelu Bisi Fayemi and other dignitaries from all walks of life, Dr. Aisha was the very image of a modest African priestess who saw past, present and future at the same time. With her promise to improve more on her efforts to give voice to the voiceless, there is little doubt that the coming years will attest to the fierceness of her work.