Chairman of the forum, Bisi Fayemi
The Nigeria Governors’ Wives Forum has reacted to the backlash it received following the video of its members presenting the first lady, Aisha Buhari a cake on her birthday in Dubai.
The video had sparked outrage on social media as many accused the governors’ wives of wasting state resources.
In a statement on Wednesday, the chairman of the forum and wife of Ekiti State governor Bisi Fayemi said those who presented the cake to Mrs Buhari when she clocked 51 in February did not fly to Dubai for that sole purpose, adding that they were part of her entourage for an official trip.
“For the avoidance of doubt and in the interest of the public, the Nigerian Governors Wives were on the entourage of the First Lady of Nigeria who was on an official trip to the UAE,” the statement said.
“The trip included visits to Dubai Expo 2020, and tours of the Dubai e-learning center, Dubai Youth Hub and meetings with foundations and agencies in UAE who are interested in investing in education, health and technology in Africa, with priority given to women and young people.
“The trip coincided with the birthday of HE Aisha Buhari. On the morning of her birthday, which was February 17th, the delegation of Governors’ Wives paid a private visit to present a cake and flowers. After the brief presentation, we proceeded to attend the scheduled meetings for the day.
“We were therefore dismayed to see footage of the visit interpreted to mean Governors’ Wives left Nigeria for the sole purpose of celebrating HE’s birthday.”
The statement added that the key learnings from the visit to the various agencies in Dubai point to the need for Nigeria to increase investments in education, science and technology and provide more opportunities for the youths.