Benue’s Yemisi Suswan & Nigeria’s “first ladyism”: (6) – Tola Adenle

Benue’s Yemisi Suswan says “God put us here” and declares herself “mother of the state”

Please click to view Ms. Suswan’s N1.5 million perfume distributed to Benue women


Photo Credit:  Sahara Reporters

Like millions of Nigerian Christians, Yemisi Suswan is quick to quote the Bible and other Christian teachings but her rarified life as a Nigerian [state] first lady is anything but common except perhaps among her peers.

I think Mrs. Suswan is a church officer which implies she takes her religious duties seriously but in the last couple of years, I had read quite a few news reports, including interviews about this self-styled “Daughter of Zion” in which her nearness to her God are much-touted that I decided to find out more about her work in Benue State where she is first lady.

Even though I’ve written much about these “first ladies” in my newspaper weekly essays, especially Osun’s Oyinlola, the first ladies of retired Nyako’s harem at Adamawa and, of course, Mrs. Yar Adua and Mrs. Jonathan – essays that were not praises as being sung by most reports about these women paint all these “ladies” with a single brush. I knew of at least one “first lady” who did not take the money and run!

Only four of those essays have so far being reproduced on this Blog. Of course there could be or have been other first ladies out there who do not/did not collect money meant for projects to supplement their husbands’ supposed roles – and misappropriate the funds.

Now, weighing the flowery words and positive image of Mrs. Suswan’s against the actuality “on the ground” as the saying goes around here, I found a wide gap between what this apparently very religious woman wants the world to believe and what she actually represents to Benue State and its people: a drain on the public purse – just like most of her counterparts in other states.

In what has now become a huge trend by the moneyed class, especially politicians, this Daughter of Zion marked her 45th birthday last month the Nigerian parvenu way: she issued a personalized perfume and reportedly gave many out to Benue’s women – urban and rural.

Welcome to Yemisi’s Better Life for Benue Women. The original – Late Mariam Babangida – must be nodding in approval from Up There.

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