First Lady Bongi Ngema-Zuma hosts Zambian First Lady Dr Christine Kaseba-Sata, 26 Feb 2013. (Photo/ Government SA)

African Strongmen Marry Beauty, And The Democrats Choose Ordinary Girls

The beautiful First Ladies probably become some kind of political bling, to make up for an autocrat’s democratic deficit. Democratic presidents, on the other hand, don’t need to put a shine on their legitimacy. They get it at the polls.


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First Lady of Cameroon, Chantal Biya, meets her US counterpart Michelle Obama at the White House in 2014. (Photo/U.S. Department of State).

The First Lady Beauty Index Of African Politics 2010

An interesting pattern emerges when you unscientifically categorise African First Ladies into two categories – whether they are ‘Beautiful’ or ‘Matronly’ and their husband’s politics into ‘Strongman leaning’ or ‘Democrats’. We’ll let you discover it for yourself.