Nigerian President's wife dies after plastic surgery operation in Spain

Mrs Obasanjo, 59, apparently had chosen to have an operation at the exclusive Molding cosmetic surgery clinic in the upmarket town of Puerto Banos near Marbella last Friday.

She was reported to have suffered a severe asthma attack and was rushed to hospital in Marbella in the early hours of Sunday morning, where she was declared brain-dead.

As the body of the wife of President Olusegun Obasanjo was being repatriated to Nigeria last night, however, the precise circumstances and cause of her death remained shrouded in mystery

The Molding, Marbella's biggest plastic surgery clinic, is the "health tourism" playground of many rich foreigners on the Costa del Sol. For many of them, it is the first choice for expensive plastic surgery treatments in luxurious surroundings.

Doctors at the clinic refused yesterday to say about the procedure undergone by Mrs Obansanjo. The clinic did, however, issue a statement, saying that she did not die during cosmetic treatment.

"At this moment we do not know the causes of Mrs Obansanjo's death and we await the results of the autopsy. We have given all information possible to those carrying out the autopsy," it said.

The daily newspaper El Pais reported that Mrs Obasanjo, looking for a way to lose weight, may have undergone liposuction, but when The Independent asked if this was the case, the clinic would not comment on the procedure she had undergone.

An initial post-mortem carried out over the weekend suggested Mrs Obansanjo might have died of a severe asthma attack. A more detailed, two-and-a-half hour-long, autopsy performed yesterday, gave a much clearer indication of the cause of death, said Antonio Garcia de Galvez, director of the Malaga Institute of Forensic Medicine, where the examination was carried out. The results will, however, remain secret and divulged only to the judge in charge of the investigation.

In Spain, autopsies are only court-ordered when the death is deemed to be of a suspicious nature - as in this case - or to have been caused by violence, Dr Garcia de Galvez said. Coroners investigating the cause of Mrs Obasanjo's death are looking for evidence of possibility of medical malpractice.

The official Nigerian media was yesterday filled with tributes for the woman who, over the past six years, came to occupy a formidable, if often controversial, role in public life through her work for children's charities and contribution to Nigeria's women's rights movement. There was little room yesterday for carping about her notorious extravagance and corruption- tainted lifestyle.

"The mother of the nation is gone," wrote Dr Ahmadu Ali, national chairman of the ruling People's Democratic Party (PDP) in a hastily arranged condolence register at the State House, Abuja.

Mrs Obasanjo, who would have turned 60 next month, became a familiar presence in Nigerian public life from the day her husband, who had taken several wives before her, took power in 1999. The couple had been separated in the early 1990s but were reunited during his imprisonment under the military dictatorship of Sani Abacha later in that decade.

Her wholesome reputation was, however, tainted earlier this year by allegations of corruption when she ordered the arrest of a newspaper publisher over an article entitled "Greedy Stella". Orobosa Omo-Ojo was detained after his newspaper, the Midwest Herald, ran an article accusing Mrs Obasanjo of organising the sale of 207 government-owned properties to her relatives at reduced prices.

During her lifetime Mrs Obasanjo also attracted widespread criticism for her ostentatious displays of wealth. That she should have apparently died after undergoing expensive cosmetic surgery in Marbella, the playground for Saudi princes and wealthy despots, will do nothing enhance her reputation.

Procedures that went wrong

* OLIVIA GOLDSMITH, Author of The First Wives Club, made into a hit film, died in New York in 2004 eight days after undergoing a face lift. She had a severe reaction to the anaesthetic.

* LESLIE ASH Former star of Men Behaving Badly, had collagen implants in her lips in 2003 which went wrong, giving her the nickname "trout pout". She described herself as having had "an accident".

* DENISE HENDRY Wife of the former Scotland football captain Colin Hendry, developed septicaemia after having a tummy tuck at a private hospital in Lancashire. She went into coma but recovered.

* HOPE DONAHUE Had 17 operations in five years and said she was addicted to the surgery in a memoir, Beautiful Stranger. Two operations went wrong, including implants that turned her chest into a hard block of scar tissue.

* JOCELYN WILDENSTEIN The divorcée, 56, was called the Bride of Wildenstein after she was said to have spent £2m on plastic surgery.

Sport
Brazilian fans watch the match for third place between Brazil and Netherlands
world cup 2014Brazil 0 Netherlands 3: Dutch pile on the misery in third place playoff
Sport
Robin van Persie hands his third-place medal to a supporter
Van Persie gives bronze medal to eccentric fan moments after being handed it by Blatter
News
Ian Thorpe had Rio 2016 in his sights
people
Life and Style
Swimsuit, £245, by Agent Provocateur
fashion

Diving in at the deep end is no excuse for shirking the style stakes

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebookA unique anthology of reporting and analysis of a crucial period of history
News
scienceScientists have developed a material so dark you can't see it...
News
Monkey business: Serkis is the king of the non-human character performance
peopleFirst Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
Arts and Entertainment
Blackman: Landscape of children’s literature does not reflect the cultural diversity of young people
booksMalorie Blackman appeals for a better ethnic mix of authors and characters and the illustrator Quentin Blake comes to the rescue
Voices
Mrs Brown's Boy: D'Movie has been a huge commercial success
voicesWhen it comes to national stereotyping, the Irish know it can pay to play up to outsiders' expectations, says DJ Taylor
Arts and Entertainment
Curtain calls: Madani Younis
theatreMadani Younis wants the neighbourhood to follow his work as closely as his audiences do
Life and Style
Douglas McMaster says the food industry is ‘traumatised’
food + drinkSilo in Brighton will have just six staple dishes on the menu every day, including one meat option, one fish, one vegan, and one 'wild card'
Life and Style
Once a month, waistline watcher Suran steps into a 3D body scanner that maps his body shape and records measurements with pinpoint accuracy
techFrom heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor
Sport
Mario Balotelli, Divock Origi, Loic Remy, Wilfried Bony and Karim Benzema
transfersBony, Benzema and the other transfer targets
News
Soft power: Matthew Barzun
peopleThe US Ambassador to London, Matthew Barzun, holds 'jeans and beer' gigs at his official residence. He says it's all part of the job
Sport
Joe Root and James Anderson celebrate their record-beaking partnership
cricketEngland's last-wicket stand against India rewrites the history books
News
Gavin Maxwell in Sandaig with one of his pet otters
peopleWas the otter man the wildlife champion he appeared to be?
News
Rowsell says: 'Wearing wigs is a way of looking normal. I pick a style and colour and stick to it because I don't want to keep wearing different styles'
peopleThe World Champion cyclist Joanna Rowsell on breaking her collarbone, shattering her teeth - and dealing with alopecia
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Information Security Manager (ISO 27001, Accreditation, ITIL)

£70000 per annum: Harrington Starr: Information Security Manager (ISO 27001, A...

C# Developer (HTML5, JavaScript, ASP.NET, Mathematics, Entity)

£30000 - £45000 per annum + Benefits + Bonus: Harrington Starr: C# Developer (...

C# Integration Developer (.NET, Tibco EMS, SQL 2008/2012, XML)

£60000 - £80000 per annum + Benefits + Bonus: Harrington Starr: C# Integration...

Biztalk - outstanding opportunity

£75000 - £85000 per annum + ex bens: Deerfoot IT Resources Limited: Biztalk Te...

Day In a Page

Iraq crisis: How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over the north of the country

How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over northern Iraq

A speech by an ex-MI6 boss hints at a plan going back over a decade. In some areas, being Shia is akin to being a Jew in Nazi Germany, says Patrick Cockburn
The evolution of Andy Serkis: First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

The evolution of Andy Serkis

First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial: Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried

You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial...

Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried
Refugee children from Central America let down by Washington's high ideals

Refugee children let down by Washington's high ideals

Democrats and Republicans refuse to set aside their differences to cope with the influx of desperate Central Americas, says Rupert Cornwell
Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Malorie Blackman appeals for a better ethnic mix of authors and characters and the illustrator Quentin Blake comes to the rescue
Blackest is the new black: Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...

Blackest is the new black

Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...
Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

The US Ambassador to London holds 'jeans and beer' gigs at his official residence – it's all part of the job, he tells Chris Green
Meet the Quantified Selfers: From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor

Meet the 'Quantified Selfers'

From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor
Madani Younis: Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Madani Younis wants the neighbourhood to follow his work as closely as his audiences do
Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

When it comes to national stereotyping, the Irish – among others – know it can pay to play up to outsiders' expectations, says DJ Taylor
Gavin Maxwell's bitter legacy: Was the otter man the wildlife champion he appeared to be?

Otter man Gavin Maxwell's bitter legacy

The aristocrat's eccentric devotion to his pets inspired a generation. But our greatest living nature writer believes his legacy has been quite toxic
Joanna Rowsell: The World Champion cyclist on breaking her collarbone, shattering her teeth - and dealing with alopecia

Joanna Rowsell: 'I wear my wig to look normal'

The World Champion cyclist on breaking her collarbone, shattering her teeth - and dealing with alopecia
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef gives raw ingredients a lift with his quick marinades

Bill Granger's quick and delicious marinades

Our chef's marinades are great for weekend barbecuing, but are also a delicious way of injecting flavour into, and breaking the monotony of, weekday meals
Germany vs Argentina World Cup 2014 preview: Why Brazilians don't love their neighbours Argentina any more

Anyone but Argentina – why Brazilians don’t love their neighbours any more

The hosts will be supporting Germany in today's World Cup final, reports Alex Bellos
The Open 2014: Time again to ask that major question - can Lee Westwood win at last?

The Open 2014

Time again to ask that major question - can Lee Westwood win at last?