OLUREMI TINUBU: First Lady, Senator, First Lady

NewsroomApril 21, 20243 min

Oluremi Tinubu, from first lady in Lagos to first lady of Nigeria with a stint in the senate in between. Her political trajectory is examined as OrderPaper’s Esther Adedoyin writes on EX-NASS MEMBERS SERIES.

Oluremi Tinubu’s political journey began as the First Lady of Lagos State, a role she assumed during her husband’s (Bola Ahmed Tinubu) tenure as governor from 1999 to 2007. 

She founded the New Era Foundation during this period, a pet project to actualise her desire to advance youth development and community service. Through this foundation, she established centres to nurture the holistic development of young people and raise public awareness of environmental health issues.

In 2011, Oluremi Tinubu moved from being the First Lady to mainstream politics. She contested and won a seat in the Senate on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC) representing Lagos Central Senatorial District. Her entry into the political arena marked the beginning of a 12-year legislative journey that further characterised her  commitment to public service.

Oluremi, born on September 21, 1960, obtained her West African Senior Secondary School Certificate Examination (WASSCE) in 1979 aftter studying at Our Lady of Apostles Secondary School in Ijebu-Ode, Ogun State. She earned a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree in Education from the University of Ife, now known as Obafemi Awolowo University.

While there may be critics, it’s essential to recognise that public figures often face praise and scrutiny. Senator Oluremi Tinubu’s impact on governance remains a subject of ongoing discussion, and opinions vary widely. In 2016, she requested sufficient security from the Inspector General of Police following an alleged threat of assault by her colleague and fellow party member, Dino Melaye, during a closed-door session of the Senate.

Due to her husband’s contest in the 2023 presidential election, Oluremi Tinubu decided not to seek reelection for a fourth term after serving three terms in the Senate. During the ninth Senate’s farewell meeting, she expressed gratitude for God’s support throughout her service. 

In 2019, she was nominated for the Eko Excellence Awards and in 2021, she received the award for the most impactful female senator at The Guardian-organised International Women’s Day Summit.

On May 29, 2023, Oluremi Tinubu’s life took a new turn as her husband, Asiwaju Bola Ahemd Tinubu, was sworn in as President of Nigeria. This significant event marked a new chapter in her journey as she assumed the role of the First Lady of Nigeria, with all its attendant responsibilities and expectations.

It is interesting that the Tinubu couple – husband and wife – have served in the Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria before assuming the highest office of President and First Lady, respectively.


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