Zamfara state Governor, Abdulazeez Yari, has denied reports by some publications alleging that he is having a romantic affair with Zahra, President Buhari’s daughter.
His lawyer, Mahmud Magaji (SAN), has written to the publishers of City People Magazine and The Polity which initially reported the story,accusing them of defamation. He has also asked them to retract the story and apologise within seven days or else the governor will file a defamation lawsuit demanding for N100 billion (The Polity) and N10 billion (City People) from the publications.
“The above publication, no doubt, is false and defamatory, and it is intended to bring the reputation of our client to ridicule and cause odium or malignity to our client,” the letter by the governor’s lawyer read. “Since the above publication, our client has received countless phone calls and text messages from family, friends, colleagues and associates, who incessantly call to enquire about the said publication.”
“Consequent upon the above, it is our client’s instruction that we demand from you published retraction of the said defamatory piece in three national newspapers inclusive of your own – City People, The Polity.”
Zahra Buhari became a celebrity during the presidential campaigns last year when her photos surfaced online. It was dramatic for Nigerians who had never had a peek into the family life of President Buhari all through his other presidential campaign runs. Zahra has since used her fame to push for causes dear to her, and became an ACE ambassador last year.
Gov. Yari who is serving his second term as governor of Zamfara state is the chairman of the Nigeria Governors Forum. The publications claimed that he had divorced one of his wives, Hadiza Umaru Shinkafi, in other to make room for the president’s daughter. It further reported, that Zahra was given a $200 million gift by the governor. The story resonated because there is a precedence of presidential daughters getting married to state governors when two daughters of former president Umaru Musa Yaradua married the governors of Kebbi and Bauchi while their father was in office.