……City People’s tales by moonlight
By Fejiro Johnson
Over the years, City People has built its reputation in Nigeria’s soft-sell magazine circles on publishing salacious gossips and hearsays. So, it is no surprise that the magazine will allow to fly such bias article; “Lagos Celebrity Women Isolate VP Osinbajo’s Wife” published on its website on September 15, against the wife of the Vice President, Her Excellency, Mrs. Dolapo Osinbajo.
It is not hard to see that the disjointed article is riddled with simple spelling errors and poor grammar constructions, that it could only have been the work of someone that gets a questionable high on beer parlour gossips and roadside rumours. That is by the side.
It also looks like the writer of the said article, Sade Cole, and Tayo Oyediji of City People is one person masquerading with two names. Or how does one explain the similarities, almost copied verbatim of their articles published on March 17, 2022, by Oyediji, and September 15, 2022, by Cole? Both articles focused on castigating the person of Mrs. Dolapo Osinbajo.
For instance, Oyediji’s report of Mrs. Osinbajo’s comments commending Mrs. Oluremi Tinubu at an event were copied verbatim by Cole. “Hear her: I remember many years ago when her excellency, Senator Oluremi Tinubu, the then First Lady of Lagos State took up the challenge to resuscitate COWLSO, my husband was the Attorney General of Lagos State at that time…”
This said event happened in November 2017 at the 17th national women conference in Lagos organised by Committee of Wives of the Lagos State Officials, COWLSO, where Mrs. Osinbajo was guest speaker. Why the writer chose to use it as a refrain to push their narrative is best known to them.
More importantly, the insinuation that Lagos Celebrity Women Isolate VP Osinbajo’s Wife, is nothing but the figment of the writer’s imagination. Those close to Mrs. Dolapo Osinbajo and from her public life, know that the wife of the Vice President is not one to hug the limelight or to be the constant figure in society weddings, loud shindigs and needless soirees. She is humble, gentle, simple and positively reserved, but she is smart, intelligent, friendly and is widely praised for being a huge pillar of support to her husband, the Vice President, from the start of their marriage and continues throughout the trajectory of his personal and public life.
That she was not seen during the Vice President Yemi Osinbajo’s campaigns before the APC primaries is not anything new. She has always and consistently supported the VP in his constitutionally recognized office as his loving wife and partner for decades.
Since assumption of office by her husband, the wife of the Vice President has been busy with charitable deeds and public activities for social good. Just to mention one of recent, where she hosted a major event as the special guest of honor, to launch the UNFPA report on Gender-based violence, Harmful practices and Obstetric fistula in Nigeria landscape analysis’ at the Statehouse Banquet Hall, Abuja.
She was also a speaker at an event organized by the Women’s Helping Hand Initiative; a capacity-building training on drug demand reduction and trafficking in persons, among others. Such worthy functions focused on social good are miles ahead of simply showing off at society parties for bling blings.
It is clear that the writers were recruited by their paymasters to carry out a hatchet job against the VP’s wife, including using her humility against her. This is not only irresponsible, but low.
Mrs. Osinbajo not present at the grand 80th birthday of Hajia Abba Folawiyo on July 22, was for very good reasons. Her husband, the Vice President, had surgery on July 16, and this was widely reported in the media. The VP went through rehabilitation for weeks after the surgery and so couldn’t be present at any public function or event during that time.
What else should a dutiful, caring and loving wife do during this period but to be by her husband’s side? Wouldn’t it be irresponsible for any good wife to prefer to attend society parties, weddings or funeral ceremonies when her husband just underwent a surgery and is still recuperating?
Expectedly, the writer chose not to mention that Mrs. Osinbajo extended her personal felicitations to Hajia Folawiyo, as well as her condolences to the family of the late Chief Mrs. Kemi Nelson, Yeyesewa of Lagos. That she didn’t do it in public glare does not reduce the gravity of her empathy for both occasions.
But like former US first Lady, Michelle Obama famously said, “when they go low, we go high.” Mrs. Dolapo Osinbajo is a woman of impeccable character. She personifies everything that is good, that is excellent and worthy of emulation. She holds no grudges against anyone, including Mrs. Oluremi Tinubu. Unlike what the writer of the article wants readers to think.
The wife of the Vice President, Mrs. Dolapo Osinbajo is an outstanding woman of excellence and integrity. She carries out her personal and public works very well with passion and commitment, on issues and events that elevate humanity and national development, without the trappings of showmanship.
Life is way more than living on the oxygen of society parties and weddings bling-bling and glam, like the writer poorly hacks on.
Johnson is a public affairs analyst and social commentator