It was Goodluck Jonathan who said in his book, My Transition Hour that no man succeeds without a good woman behind him-wife or mother, if it is both, he is twice blessed indeed
As such, one may want to say that Madam Fatima Bio was very pivotal in the victory of President Bio in the 2018 campaign trail.
Of course, she moved with President Bio in the length and breadth of Sierra Leone convincing and canvassing votes for her husband which ended up in him winning the 2018 election.
Unlike the Presidential bid in the campaign trail against former President Koroma in 2012, Fatima Bio created a lasting impression of President Bio as the lovely husband and the wonderful father.
With all this, nobody should envy Fatima Bio for being all over her husband rather some hard truth should be told Fatima at least to save further embarrassment of the Presidency.
One thing Fatima Bio should know is that the Office of the first lady is a privileged position. Sierra Leoneans in no way voted for Fatima Bio rather they voted for Julius Maada Bio.
This is what Michelle Obama said about the Office of First Lady in the USA in her book Becoming Me, “…until recently I was the first lady of the United States of America-a job that’s not officially a job but nonetheless has given me platform like nothing I could have imagined. It challenged me and humbled me, lifted me up and shrank me down sometimes at all once.”
The above statement from Michelle Obama is to tell Fatima Bio that she is not officially part of government and governance issues should not be part of her mandate rather her advice for her husband should be in the room.
I think it was a mistake for Fatima Bio to have an office outside the Presidential Lodge because by having an office outside the lodge will make her think that she is part of government. I was informed that Charles Margai, the former Attorney General saw this coming and he advised President Bio that Office of the First Lady is not an office and no special office should be created for her outside lodge. It is believed that this coupled with other reasons led to the untimely removal of Charles Francis Margai from government.
Another thing which Fatima should learn is to humbled herself. The platform she is being given as the First Lady of Sierra Leone should be used to reach out to vulnerable and not to involve in controversies like the Female Genital Mutilation which she supported and to question the discretion of her husband by saying that “there are serpents and evil people around the President.”
Sierra Leoneans are expecting Fatima to solicit the support of the women of this country like late Patricia Kabbah used to do for her husband’s policies. The whole country supported Fatima when she came with “Hands off Our Girls Campaign” because Sierra Leoneans believed it was a laudable initiative. So, she should think of meaningful things.
“I’ve heard about the swampy party of the internet that question everything about me, right down to whether I’m a woman or a man. A sitting US Congressman has made fun of my butt. I’ve been hurt. I’ve been furious but mostly I’ve tried to laugh this stuff off,’’ Michelle Obama stated.
From the above quote, one will know that first ladies will be hurt, they will be provoked but they should be mature to handle those situations without resorting to embarrassing the Presidency.
Moreover, being a first lady automatically brings one into a public life in which almost everything will be discussed in public forum and that anything untoward will cause serious problem of your husband. Therefore, the First should talk to the most recent past first lady, Sia Nyamma Koroma to know how she was able to respond to issues maturely or else she will keep on embarrassing the presidency.