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Nigerian First Lady's expensive-looking '$50,000 Cartier' watch draws ridicule

President Muhammadu Buhari has promoted his modest background

Heather Saul
Wednesday 03 June 2015 18:56 BST
Muhammadu Buhari, Nigeria’s President-elect (AFP)
Muhammadu Buhari, Nigeria’s President-elect (AFP) (AFP)

Members of the Nigerian electorate have mocked their new President Muhammadu Buhari’s 'man of the people' image after his wife was photographed wearing an expensive-looking watch.

The former military leader beat the incumbent President Goodluck Jonathon in Nigeria’s election this year and he reportedly crowd-sourced some of the funds to run his campaign.

Mr Buhari said this ensured his “strength came from the ordinary people" and the move helped pit him as a more relatable candidate in the election, according to the BBC. He also reportedly used his own financial reserves to pay to register as a candidate.

However, an image shared by photographer George Okoro of the First Lady Aisha Buhari upset this perception somewhat when Instagram users spotted a watch on her wrist which was identified in Nigerian press as a Cartier Baignoire Folle 18-carat white gold diamond model.

A photo posted by sir George Okoro (@georgeokoro) on

If real, the watch could be worth an estimated $50,000 (£32,000) – although replica versions are on sale for as little as $100.

It is not known whether the First Lady's is real or a replica, but she has been mentioned in almost 9,000 tweets within the past two days.

One user asked: “If the president borrowed 24m to buy APC form, where did Aisha Buhari get 10m to buy watch?"

Others defended Ms Buhari and the President, with one writing: “Aisha Buhari became First Lady on 29 May. It's not your business what happened in their lives before then. This is not how to be opposition.”

Another added: "Aisha Buhari didn't use Nigeria's money to buy her watch so what exactly is the problem? Am i missing something? Why is it a big deal?"

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