Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar and former chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mallam Nuhu Ribadu, are set to become in-laws on Saturday as Aliyu Abubakar and Fatima Ribadu are scheduled to tie the knot in what is believed will be a low-key ceremony in Abuja.
Ribadu, in a wedding notification, said only a few people will be able to attend the ceremony in full observation of COVID-19 protocols.
Atiku and Ribadu are political foes despite both hailings from Adamawa. This however didn’t stop their children from finding love.
While Atiku served as Vice President under the administration of former President Olusegun Obasanjo, Ribadu held sway as EFCC chairman.
Ribadu’s EFCC investigated Atiku relations with Congressman Thomas Jefferson who was eventually indicted and sentenced for corruption.
Atiku maintained his innocence, insisting he was a victim of persecution by Obasanjo in the build-up to the 2007 presidential contest.
After the administration, they remained political foes. Ribadu ran as the presidential candidate of the opposition Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) in 2011 while Atiku was in the PDP.
The former Vice President moved the other way after the alliance between the then All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP) and a faction of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) to form the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the run-off to the 2015 presidential election.
But the momentary stay in the same party was over when Ribadu moved to the PDP to contest Adamawa governorship election, which he lost.
After the 2015 election, Atiku returned to the PDP with the Adamawa chapter then controlled by Ribadu, who didn’t hesitate to return to the APC immediately.
Atiku contested the 2019 presidential election as PDP candidate while Ribadu remains in the APC.
Atiku’s spokesperson Paul Ibe was quoted as saying: “Sometimes we fans and supporters assume too much or try to cry more than the bereaved. Atiku Abubakar is in PDP, Nuhu Ribadu is in APC; how does that affect two young people?
“It is about their lives. People make choices and Atiku brought up his children to be independent-minded, to have a mind of their own. They are educated, they are exposed. They share in the values of their father which include respect for people despite their religion, their customs or where they come from.
“They (the couples) are living the values that their parents have espoused and hold dear. This is what it is. If they met themselves and decided that they are compatible enough to spend the rest of their lives together, how would that bother you and I who have also made our independent choices?’’