By Ahmed Idris
Beauty and brain are not found in all humans, just as it is no common to find a woman who is as lovely as she is learned and lion-hearted. Such a woman, nonetheless, can be found here and there even if not in large numbers. One of such daughters of Eve is Mrs Lara Oshiomhole (nee Fortes), the enchanting wife of the immediate past governor of Edo state, Adams Aliyu Oshiomhole.
Prior to her emergence in the life of Oshiomhole, little or nothing had been heard or known about her in Nigeria. In fact, the grapevines had been burstling with speculations that the ex-labour leader, whose first wife had passed on few years before, would settle for another Edo or Delta state lady. Only for the former Miss Fortes to waltz her path all the way from Cape Verde (her home country) straight into Oshiomhole’s heart.
Meeting her face-to-face or through her image for the first time, it is not hard to divine the reason why this native of Cape Verde verily captivated Oshiomhole’s heart. Beautiful, intelligent and industrious, she is the type of lady many a man would climb the highest mountains to win. Speaking at a thanksgiving service held shortly after their well publicized wedding in 2004, Oshiomhole hinted that much when he declared that her inner beauty glowed to the extent that he willingly fell in love with her.
Interestingly, despite being a celebrated model, at least before walking down the aisle with Oshiomhole, Lara remained so virtous that her bridegroom couldn’t resist the urge to proudly declare in public that “I can boldly say to you that I was the first man to know her and initiated into the worldly ways.”
Those who know Lara intimately are not surprised by that. Right from her childhood in Cape Verde, she had stood out on account of her humility, discipline, virtues and chastity. So much so that while her mates were having what they called “nice times,” she would rather focus on her studies and extra–curricular activities. With such an edifying character and winsome personality, it’s no wonder Oshiomhole’s family warmly received her into their life.
As first lady of Edo state, Mrs lara was the epitome of elegance and simplicity, never flamboyant nor controversial, forever an embodiment of what a first lady should be. And since her husband’s tenure ended in 2015, she has continued from where she stopped, playing her role as Oshiomhole’s better–half to the letter. Take a bow, Lara Fortes Oshiomhole, the lovely, lion–hearted lady from Cape Verde who came to Nigeria, saw and conquered in style.