Pulse List: 5 notorious 1st ladies of dictators

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Wife of former Zimbabwe leader Grace Mugabe

These first ladies are as bad as their husbands because of the wealth they plundered.

The women who marry dictators are as bad as their husbands.

While their husbands rule their countries with an iron fist, these women enjoy the spoils of leadership. They spend a lot of money on shopping in Europe and have access to their nations' treasuries.

There have been many first lady dictators but here are some of the memorable five;

1) Gucci Grace


Grace Mugabe is the wife of former Zimbabwe dictator Robert Mugabe. She was formerly his personal secretary but an affair saw her become the first lady after Robert Mugabe's wife died. 

Grace Mugabe is called Gucci Grace because of her extravagant and lavish lifestyle. In a country with serious economic problems, Grace Mugabe was known for spending large sums of money.  In 2012, it was claimed that she spent £120,000 in many expensive stories in Europe.

When she was confronted with spending so much, she denied it. "The only thing I’ve bought in Harrods is almond nuts because I eat lots of almond nuts. I want to eat healthily… I go out and they say she’s bought clothes with a million pounds" she said in an interview in 2013. She also has a palace.

2) Asma al-Assad


Asma al-Assad is the wife of Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad. While her country has been plunged into a war with terrorist group ISIS, Asma still has time to buy expensive chandeliers. She does a lot of online shopping and once bought tables and other furniture from Paris for more than £10,000. She also bought a vase for £2,650.

ALSO READ: The key dates in Grace Mugabe's life

3) Leila Trabelsi


Leila Trabelsi is in the history books as the woman who sparked the Arab Spring. Her extravagant life led to this bad credit in history. She is the wife of former Tunisian President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali. Leila was a true mafioso as she allegedly extorted money from shop owners. It was reported that she had a  £3.5billion stake in the business empires of Tunisia. When they were kicked out of Tunisia during the Arab Spring, Leila Trabelsi took away £37.5 million worth of gold from the nation's central bank.

4) Safia Gaddafi


Safia Gaddafi - The wife of the late Libyan dictator  Colonel Gaddafi was worth £20 billion even though she tried to appear modest and humble. When she fled the country, she took along 20 tons of gold.

ALSO READ: The amazing women behind Africa's longest serving rulers

5) Michele Duvalier


She was married to Haitian dictator  President Jean-Claude “Baby Doc” Duvalier. They got married in 1980 in a lavish wedding ceremony that was said to be worth £2 million. Her husband's regime was filled with terror and fear- an extension of his father's iron hand regime. Michele and Jean-Claude were eventually kicked out of Haiti. They reportedly fled to the French Riviera with  £300 million and luxury cars. They got divorced in 1990. In the divorce settlement, Michele made away with almost all the money.  

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