Iyabo Obasanjo-Bello

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Iyabo Obasanjo
Ogun Central Senator
In office
May 2007 – May 2011
Preceded by Ibikunle Amosun
Succeeded by Olugbenga Onaolapo Obadara
Constituency Ogun Central
Personal details
Born (1967-04-27) 27 April 1967 (age 50)
Lagos Nigeria
Nationality Nigerian
Political party People's Democratic Party (PDP)
Residence United States
Profession Veterinarian, Epidemiologist

Iyabo Obasanjo-Bello (born 27 April 1967) is a daughter to former Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo and Oluremi Obasanjo.[1]

Early life and education[edit]

Obasanjo-Bello attended Corona School in Victoria Island, Lagos, Capital School in Kaduna, and Queen's College in Lagos. She obtained a degree in Veterinary Medicine from the University of Ibadan in 1988, a master's degree in Epidemiology from University of California, Davis in Davis, California, United States, in 1990, and a PhD in the same subject from Cornell University in Ithaca, New York, in 1994.[2]

Political career[edit]

Before her senatorial election, Obasanjo-Bello was Ogun State Commissioner for Health.[3] She was elected as a Nigerian Senator representing Ogun Central Senatorial District of Ogun State in April 2007.[3] She ran for re-election April 2011 on the PDP platform, but was defeated by Olugbenga Onaolapo Obadara of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN), who gained 102,389 votes to Obasanjo Bello's 56,312.[4] For 2012[5]

Senate career[edit]

Obasanjo-Bello was elected to the Senate on 28 April 2007 on a People's Democratic Party (PDP) platform; her Action Congress (AC) opponent Remilekun Bakare challenged this outcome, but the Ogun State Election Petition Tribunal upheld her victory.[6]

She was the Chairman of the Senate's Health Committee, and a member of the Security & Intelligence, Land Transport, Science & Technology, Education, National Planning, and Inter-Parliamentary Committees.[3] She lost her seat during the National Assembly Elections on 9 April 2011.

Assassination attempt[edit]

In April 2003 on the day of the general elections her car was shot at on Ifo Road in Ogun State. She was not in the car but 3 adults and 2 children in the car died. The perpetuators were never caught.[7]

EFCC investigation[edit]

In April 2008, Obasanjo-Bello came under investigation by Nigeria's Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) due to the investigations involving the Former Minister for Health and her minister for (state) Health, Prof. Adenike Grange, for embezzlement of public funds. The Ministry at the end of the financial year did not return all unspent funds to the government coffers. The amount was 300 million naira, which was allegedly distributed among the Minister, her minister of state and top civil servants on the Senate and House Health Committee she chairs. The Minister and her deputy were forced to resign after returning their share of the money; they were later arrested and posted bail. Iyabo Obasanjo-Bello refused to return her portion of this money, 10 million naira. She claimed that the nine members of her committee "lobbied" for funds from the ministry they oversaw. She maintained this money was spent on a conference on capacity building some members of the health committee attended in Ghana. She has so far refused to appear before the EFCC. Although summoned, along with the minister and other civil servants, she refused to appear in court. A week later a high drama ensued when officials of the EFCC tried to arrest her at her home in the Maitama district of Abuja city, after several simultaneous stake outs by law enforcement officials that had her jumping over her fence to evade arrest by Nigerian law enforcement officers. In 2009 the case was thrown out of the High Court in Abuja as having no merit.

Obasanjo-Bello described the allegation as "blackmail", and said she was being targeted because she was the daughter of the former President.[8]

Academic career[edit]

She worked in Clinical Research in the US before returning to Nigeria in 2003. she was a Fellow and for 2013[9] a Senior Fellow at Harvard's Advanced Leadership Initiative. Her noted works include:


  1. ^ Obi, Rita (29 March 2005). "Obasanjo's first love". The Sun News Online. The Sun Publishing. Retrieved 22 December 2007. 
  2. ^ "Profile". Iyabo 4 Senate. Retrieved 22 December 2007. 
  3. ^ a b c "Senator Iyabo Obasanjo-Bello". NAssNig.org. National Assembly of Nigeria. Archived from the original on 3 March 2016. Retrieved 21 December 2007. 
  4. ^ "Advertising Guru Elected Senator in Ogun State". PM News. 10 April 2011. Retrieved 5 May 2011. 
  5. ^ Obasanjo-Bello, Iyabo. "List of 2012 Fellows". Harvard University – Advanced Leadership Initiative. Archived from the original on 29 May 2013. 
  6. ^ Larewaju, Kolade (11 December 2007). "Election tribunal upholds Obasanjo-Bello's election". Vanguard Online. Vanguard Media. Retrieved 22 December 2007. 
  7. ^ "Four Die as Gunmen Shoot at Obasanjo's Daughter". Africa News Service. 23 April 2003. 
  8. ^ "…It's Pure Blackmail, Says Ex-President's Daughter". Thisday. Leaders & Company. 20 December 2007. Retrieved 22 December 2007. 
  9. ^ Obasanjo-Bello, Iyabo. "List of 2013 Fellows". Harvard University – Advanced Leadership Initiative. 
  10. ^ "Iyabo Obasanjo". ResearchGate. Retrieved February 2014.  Check date values in: |access-date= (help)