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I take my family’s welfare seriously —Lecturer with 18 children

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A lecturer at the Umar Bn Khattab College of Education, Kaduna, Mohammed Sulaiman, trended on social media after he shared his photographs with his wives and 18 children, during Eid-el-Kabir. He speaks with SEGUN ADEWOLE about how he takes care for his family

The photographs you took with your family, which you shared on Eid-el-Kabir, trended on social media. How do you feel about that?

Actually, it is a tradition in my family for everyone to come together and take pictures, and I’ve been posting them on my page for years. If you follow my page, you’ll see them, but this year it became something else. I just discovered it is trending and has gone viral.

Did you ever imagine that you’d have such a large family before you married?
Well, it’s interesting that before I got married, if they had given me a wife, I would have said they should divide me into two. This is because the way we were brought up, we constantly heard about the difficulty of taking care of a wife and the children, so it made me feel like having half a wife, not a full wife.

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That was my mentality then, but as I grew and understood the philosophy of life, I realised that all I needed was to strive and work hard to cater to their needs, and I could see a lot of opportunities to do that without even working in a collar job. I also see it as a means to cater to women because there are many of them without a husband. I now have three wives, and I’m hoping to marry another one in two months’ time.

As someone who has so many children, do you sometimes forget their names?
Why will I forget the names of my children? As a Muslim, the names of my kids were taken from the names of Allah, so they are arranged in that sequence. I give them nicknames so I know them by their names and nicknames. What you’re seeing in the picture is distorted. My children are 18, not 19, as has been said. I have the children of my brothers and sisters. In short, about seven of them are not part of the picture because some are still in school, some are writing the senior secondary certificate, National Examination Council (NECO), so they did not come home. They had their clothes too, but they were not part of the pictures. That is to say, apart from my kids, I have another seven or eight that are with me. They are my brothers’ and sisters’ children.

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How do you handle rivalry among your wives and children as head of the house?

Speaking of rivalry, I think you will have little problem adjusting. You need to be fair in whatever you do, so fairness and equity make it very easy for me, and you can see they came together and agreed to take pictures together. There are places where there is rivalry, and the junior wife and senior wife cannot stay together because they will never tolerate each other. I can’t allow that because as Muslims we communicate and I never find it difficult to talk to my family, but at times you have some little challenges which are normal because there is no perfection in man.

Do you face challenges in providing for and taking care of your large family?

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To be sincere, maybe because I’m productive in terms of searching, working, and travelling. I can work anywhere. I remember that I once worked with a cargo company, moving from Saudi Arabia to Nigeria and other places. I have never found it difficult to feed my family or pay my children’s school fees.
In short, I was awarded at my children’s school for being one of the parents that paid school fees promptly. My daughter is in university, my son is in a polytechnic, and I have at no time had any difficulty because I planned. I know after a school term, I will be paying for another term or semester, so somewhere along the line, I have it all planned out, and because I’m a Muslim, we were taught to plan things.

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A pregnancy lasts for nine months; does it befit you as a man in the eighth month to start running helter-skelter for the delivery items? You have to plan ahead for the nine months, and as a Muslim, you plan ahead, so by the time it is the right time to produce all you need, Insha’Allah, you’ll have them already because you’re planning.
Have you ever faced criticism for having a polygamous family?

That is the norm, in short, day in and day out. Even with the pictures that went viral, I concentrated more on the criticisms. There are people who criticise sensibly and respond to them, and there are some that are foolish and insulting. I have no business with them. These criticisms make me rethink and ask myself what I am doing wrong, what I’m doing well, and what my lapses are that need correction.

Are you going to ensure that all your children get educated and to what level?

One of my daughters is already in 400L studying Biology, another is studying Computer Science. I know the importance of education, both Islamic, that is, moral education, and also western education; in short, I add trade to it. Apart from going to school, they go to Islamiyah (Arabic school) and they learn trade.

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Considering the state of the economy, do you intend on having more children?

Actually, so far, I haven’t considered the state of the economy. I’ve considered what I can do and how I can make money to satisfy my family. When the Kaduna State Governor increased the school fees in Kaduna universities, someone advised that I defer my daughter’s admission, but I refused because I was capable of working. Why am I working? Is it not to satisfy my family? When you hear people talk about the state of the economy, it is because they don’t want to work. I don’t mind, as long as I have a job that earns me legitimate money.

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What advice will you give to anyone considering getting married to many wives?
Not even many wives, some people have only one wife and maybe two children but don’t take care of them. You can see such a man looking flashy outside but he doesn’t take care of his family so the issue is not multiple wives. There are many examples like this. Some find it difficult to feed their families but go out to restaurants to eat the best. They cannot feed their families and cannot pay school fees.

So, I’m not even advising the person that is looking for multiple wives; I’m talking to a man with a single wife who doesn’t do the right thing. We should fear Allah and do the right thing; Allah will question us if we do otherwise. It is our responsibility, so we should try to live up to it. If you just go and relax, you’ll blame yourself hereafter.

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Singer Brymo tackles Peter Okoye over the way he drags Seun Kuti and the Kuti’s family

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Popular Nigerian singer, Brymo in a recent post on social media tackle his colleague, Peter Okoye over the way he drags Seun Kuti as well as the Kuti’s family.

It all started Seun Kuti stated that it takes the effort of dedicated Nigerians to save Nigeria, not an opportunist like Peter Obi.

Reacting to this, Singer Peter Okoye who is Peter Obi die hard supporter slams Seun Kuti for calling Peter Obi an opportunist and by extension attacks Seun Kuti’s paternal figure.

Dragging Seun Kuti further, Peter Okoye disclosed that if not because of his father no one knows Seun Kuti as he couldn’t point out a song he sang successfully.

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Bragging about his achievement, Peter Okoye said that his late father was nobody, but now everyone knows the “Okoye” and by extension dares Seun Kuti to remove “kUTI” from his surname and see if anyone would recognize him.

He wrote, “My late Father was a nobody but today everyon knows the OKOYES! Dude try removing “KUTI” from you name make I know weda anybody sabi you! Remain in that your Local SHRINE while people like us and others continue excelling Globally! YOU CANT SHAME THE SHAMELESS!”

Reacting to the statement, singer Brymo who is a supporter of Tinubu advised Peter Okoye to delete the post as he accused him of being egoistic in nature by claiming he is self made.

Brymo wrote, “Bros .. you never delete ?..you go keep this post wey trifle your pops, just cause it reads like you are self-made and he inherited fame ?..that’s your point right ?.. this belittles yours.. this is quite self serving, I doubt you own your successes, you belong to your sponsors ?”

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Outrage as Ezendigbo of Ibadanland confers chieftaincy title on Olubadan

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There has been an uproar as a self-titled Ezendigbo of Ibadan land and Oyo state, Alex Anozie, conferred an Igbo chieftaincy title of Ezi ogo ukwu Ndigbo on the Olubadan of Ibadan land, His Imperial Majesty, Oba Senator Lekan Balogun.

Anozie, who conferred the award recently in Ibadan, explained that Ndigbo on January 29, 2023 made history by gathering together to launch their almanac besides using the opportunity to honour their beloved great in-law, His Imperial Majesty, Kabiyesi Olubadan, with an Igbo title, which means a very good and great in-law of Ndigbo.

He recalled that on December 4,2022 during their Igbo day celebration at Liberty stadium, Ibadan, Ndigbo conferred on their daughter, Her Imperial Majesty, Joyce Balogun with an Igbo Chieftaincy title of Ada Oma Ndigbo nala Ibadan and Oyo state.

Anozie observed that Kabiyesi Olubadan is married to one of their beautiful daughters of Igbo origin from Onitsha adding that the marriage is wonderfully blessed with beautiful children while the couple are living together peacefully all these years as husband and wife.

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“With the authority conferred on me by my people Ndigbo in Ibadan and Oyo state since the year 1997, I hereby confer this title on our dear Imperial majesty, Oba Lekan Balogun”, he declared, “Everything we can do to keep moving on with the peaceful and progressive manner Ndigbo and Ibadan people and indeed Yoruba have been living together in Nigeria, we shall continue to do and encourage.”

However, this didn’t not sit well with Yoruba scholars and elders as such title was seen as an insult on the throne of Olubadan and the Yoruba race in general. Many were of the opinion that the self acclaimed Igbo king, a guest in Ibadan, overstepped his boundary by giving a title to the Olubadan kingdom, his host.

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“Àyà gbàngbà nílé onílé, hábà . Àlejò conferring a title on the King on his own land! This shows how stupid we appear to have become! A mà wá r’ógo o. They are playing politics here but it is rude and we have to separate issues and disallow our revered Oba being disrespected. Ọba kii joyè n’ilẹ̀ tiwa. Nobody can confer Chieftaincy title on any of our Ọbas no matter how tiny his town his. This lady should be scolded and made to publicly denounce this nonsense and apologise to Kábíyèsí,” one wrote.

“Abomination. Even a prince don’t take chieftancy title from other king,” wrote another.

“One “Anozie confers chieftaincy title on Olubadan.” Meaning an Anozie (whoever he may be & wherever he may be from) conferred a chieftaincy title on the paramount ruler of Ibadan! Other than the audacity, it is even procedurally and ethically unheard of, for a paramount ruler (equivalent to a King) to now be subjected to the indignity of being regarded as a lesser Chief of whoever! Abomination buruku niyen now! That’s the height of indignity that can be visited on a King! Abi after King, wetin remain?! Conferring our Olubadan with another minor chieftaincy title is akin to subjugation. The “conferer” has essentially assumed authority over the “conferee”. It’s simple!

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“That someone would even think of doing it is one thing, that the person now actually has the gut and effrontery to actualise it is quite galling. Arinfin gba niyen! It is the worst of slight and an affront to the Stool.

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“How do you demote a paramount ruler (King) like Olubadan and now call him one of your chiefs?!

“There was and is nothing noble behind that intention! It was a deliberate act of mischief calculated to ridicule the symbol of the people of Ibadan. Plain and simple!

“Where else have you heard of such ridiculous conferment?! What is bad is bad please.

“If the Olubadan can’t run the culprit out of Ibadan, let him at least reject such brazen insult with extreme prejudice! Arrant Nonsense!” a lawyer submitted.

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“Èèmọ̀!” wrote one indignantly.

While response is being awaited from the Olubadan palace over the development, the Yoruba people are concerned about the implication of allowing such action to go unpunished.

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Standard Chartered executives visit Wema Bank (Photo)

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From left to right: MD/CEO, Wema Bank Plc, Moruf Oseni, Executive Director, Standard Chartered Bank Nigeria, Olukorede Adenowo and Deputy Managing Director, Wema Bank Plc, Wole Akinleye, during a courtesy visit, to discuss business opportunities between both financial institutions, at the Wema Bank Towers this week.

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