Viviane Wade

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Viviane Wade
Viviane Wade and Laura Bush.jpg
Viviane Wade (left) and Laura Bush (right)
First Lady of Senegal
In office
1 April 2000 – 2 April 2012
President Abdoulaye Wade
Preceded by Elizabeth Diouf
Succeeded by Mareme Faye Sall
Personal details
Born (1932-09-13) 13 September 1932 (age 84)
Besançon, France
Spouse(s) Abdoulaye Wade (m. 1963)
Children Karim Wade, Sindjely Wade

Viviane Wade née Vert (born 13 September 1932) is a French-born Senegalese public figure who served as First Lady of Senegal from 2000 to 2012, as the wife of President Abdoulaye Wade.

Early life[edit]

Born in Besançon, she was raised in France. She met Abdoulaye Wade while they attended the University of Franche-Comté in Besançon; they were married in 1963.[1]

Political life[edit]

Abdoulaye Wade later became active as leader of the Senegalese Democratic Party in opposition. Following the 1993 presidential election, in which Wade was defeated, there was some political unrest in the country and the vice president of the Constitutional Court, Babacar Seye, was assassinated. Both Abdoulaye and Viviane were arrested and imprisoned under suspicion of involvement. Those charges were later dropped, and three other people were sentenced for the murder.[2] Following her husband's election as President of Senegal in 2000, Viviane became First Lady.[3]

After the end of her husband's Presidency, she closed down the Acting for Education and Health foundation and made the staff redundant.[4] The couple relocated from Senegal to Paris.[5]

Following the imprisonment of her son, Karim, on corruption charges, she supported his claims of innocence and suggested that the charges were politically motivated.[6] Wade had been with the former President in Versailles when the charges were announced. Prior to the trial, she made weekly trips from Paris to Dakar to visit her son; she had been staying in France to look after his three daughters due to the death of their mother.[7] Wade attended all the sessions of his trial, while her husband did not in order not to lend legitimacy to the proceedings.[6]


  1. ^ "Arrêt sur image-Abdoulaye et Viviane Wade : 51 ans de mariage, ça se fête !" (in French). 28 October 2016. Retrieved 28 October 2016. 
  2. ^ Banks, Arthur S.; Day, Alan J.; Mueller, Thomas C., eds. (1998). Political Handbook of the World 1998. Binghamton, N.Y.: CSA Publications. p. 801. ISBN 978-0-93319-913-2. 
  3. ^ "Senegal ex-president Wade returns from exile". Al Jazeera. 26 April 2014. Retrieved 28 October 2016. 
  4. ^ "Viviane Wade victime des générosités intéressées". Seneplus (in French). 7 April 2013. Retrieved 28 October 2016. 
  5. ^ "Urgent: Madame Viviane Wade quitte Dakar pour Paris" (in French). 25 February 2015. Retrieved 28 October 2016. 
  6. ^ a b Frenk, Carine (6 October 2014). "Viviane Wade: «On veut détruire l'image de Karim et de son père»". rfi Afrique (in French). Retrieved 28 October 2016. 
  7. ^ Ba, Mehdi (6 October 2014). "Sénégal : Viviane Wade, jamais sans mon fils". rfi Afrique (in French). Retrieved 28 October 2016. 

External links[edit]