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‘I Lost Two Children To Sickle Cell’ – President Muhammadu Buhari Opens Up

‘I Lost Two Children To Sickle Cell’ – President Muhammadu Buhari Opens Up

Nigeria’s number one man, President Muhammadu Buhari has made some revelation about some of the tragedies he suffered.

He revealed that he lost two of his children from his late first wife, Safinatu, to sickle cell. The president made this known in a documentary played at a private dinner organised to mark his 80th birthday at the State House Banquet Hall.

Speaking on his personal life during the feature in a documentary titled, ‘Essential Muhammadu Buhari’ shown on Friday night December 23, at a private dinner organized by his family and very close associates, to celebrate his 80th birthday tagged “Celebrating A Patriot, a Leader, an Elder Statesman,” President Buhari stated that he had insisted that his second wife must be AA genotype so that his children will not inherit the S from his AS genotype, having lost two of his children by his late wife to sickle cell anemia.

Safinatu was the First Lady of Nigeria from 1983 to 1985. She was the first wife of Muhammadu Buhari. She met Buhari at the age of 14 and they married in 1971 when she was 18. They had 5 children namely; Zulaihatu (deceased), Magajiya-Fatima, Hadizatu-Nana, Safinatu Lami and Musa (deceased).

READ ALSO: Is Love Enough? The Sickle Cell Aid Foundation Is Raising Awareness For Genotype Checks Before Marriage

When Muhammadu Buhari’s government was overthrown by Ibrahim Babangida, she relocated to Kaduna with her children. However, they divorced in 1988.

This explained why, at the time he married the first lady, Aisha Buhari, he insisted his second wife must be AA genotype.

Buhari also described as “not a funny joke,” claims by some Nigerians that presumed him to be long dead and replaced by a body double named ‘Jibril of Sudan.’

The President said the dark rumour was the handiwork of some mischief makers who thrive on what they do not understand.

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In the documentary interview, Buhari responded to a question about the rumour saying,

“Yes! People said I am somebody from Sudan. I didn’t bother with the name. Nigerians have mischievous ways of explaining themselves.”

Asked if he finds such allusions to be funny, he said:

“No. It is not funny because those who made those statement, they just want to be cheeky. They want to distract attention from the main issue. Our main issue is to do the infrastructure, make people aware that they need to work hard to live well. They just want to enjoy life without earning the respect of their community and so on.”


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