Challenges and pressures faced by family of African Presidents

While the presidents of African countries have a large sum of power and responsibility, there are pressures and difficulties that their families must deal with while living their whole lives in the public eye.

In a video recorded some time ago, Brenda Biya discusses some of these pressures and challenges that she faces as the daughter of Cameroonian President Paul Biya. 

“Do I feel any pressure with that position? I definitely do. But I try not to think about it too much because at the end of the day, it’s my life and I have to be happy about it,” says Biya as she addresses questions from her followers.

Brenda’s father, Paul Biya, has been President of Cameroon for nearly four decades and has been in power for much longer than Brenda has even been alive.

During the video, she also said that she tends to be more closed off and reserved around people she does not know well, although it is easier for her to have a social life abroad than back in Cameroon.

The children of Presidents are often born into very unique circumstances and being the son or daughter of an African head-of-state is an experience unlike any other. While it undoubtedly has its perks, having an African President for a father complicates many things and can make it difficult to live a “normal” life.

For the children of many African Presidents, such as Biya, their fathers receive plenty of both praise and criticism from the public and sometimes find themselves to be at the center of controversies. Thus, their children are often the subject of criticism purely by association and are looked at through a different lens than other African teens or young adults.

Having such powerful, influential, and public figures for parents, there are challenges presented to the children of African Presidents who find that living their own lives and learning to put their guard down does not come without its challenges and difficulties.

Noah Pitcher is a global politics correspondent for Today News Africa covering the U.S. government, United Nations, African Union, and other actors involved in international developments, political controversies, and humanitarian issues.

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