by Femi Odedere.
Managing the image of a country’s president and that of his family can be a very serious and daunting undertaking by those who are fortunate/unfortunate enough to be saddled with the responsibility. It can be a tasking, energy-sapping, yet thankless preoccupation, especially in the Nigerian political landscape where the deconstruction of the chief of state and/or his family begins almost immediately after the swearing-in ceremony, and largely by the same political class that had helped in achieving victory for the chief of state in the first place. All nefarious tactics are always on the table for this deconstruction. Therefore, the image maker must not only be versatile, but has to constantly sleep with his/her two eyes open to prevent the ‘deconstructionists’ from making mincemeat of his/her principal.
Tolu Ogunlesi, the special assistant on digital/new media in the presidency, whose appointment by the president took effect on February 18, 2016 and Bayo Omoboriowo, Buhari’s personal photographer may, at some point, have come into the consciousness of Nigerians, either before they joined the president’s image making team or in the course of their jobs in the presidency. Also the duo of the media minders of the first family, in the persons of Zaynab Ikaz-Kassim, Mrs. Buhari’s personal assistant and Haye Okoh, the personal photographer of the wife of the president, are worthy of note.