Monday 4th of July 2016, Global Africa Women’s week was launched at the house of parliament, to become a day that we must keep in mind. Not because it is the US Independence Day but because it was the first day of an entire week dedicated to African Women, a forum created by illustrious African daughter, Dr Pauline Long.
For the occasion, a hundred women engaged from the entire world were reunited around the TV presenter Pauline Long and former president of Malawi Dr Joyce Benda, in Westminster Palace. The UK parliament hosted the launch of the first Global Africa Women’s Week on the theme “giving the African woman her voice back”. In a broader context, the movement aims at connecting African women through victory, injustices, struggles, and business. Thereby, during each first week of July, their initiatives would be emphasised.
It is time for us to speak for ourselves!
In a full committee room decorated by Vivian Timothy’s masterpieces, raising multiple aspects of African women strength, people came to share their engagement, as they seemed ready to change the world. Very special men and women responded to Pauline Long’s call. Among them, Femi and Roucheon Iloyi, founders of Feromedia and their lovely kids, Mama Charlotte founder of the NGO Mothers of Congo, Robin Marsh of UPF, Ikanyeng Molemele Moipolai CEO of Destiny Organisation, African beauty queens, Dr Alistair Soyode CEO BEN TV, Faustina Anyanwu Chief Editor C. Hub magazine, Nigerian philosopher and author Eze Ihenacho and many more outstanding profiles shared their experiences and hopes. Women empowerment, economy, education, health, political parity, African cultures and sustainable development were discussed.
The guest of honour was none other than Dr Joyce Banda former president of Malawi. For the Africa first female president, time has come for women to be at the forefront. Men have a key role in this process, as it should not be the celebration of some kind of afro-feminism. There will be no women empowerment without including men. I am sure she is right; it is not a gender battle but a common advancement. She noted that leading women in Africa isn’t the latest fad. Indeed, it has always existed. There used to be great women ruling Empires as Cleopatra, Queen of Sheba or Anna Zingha in Angola. When we address this matter from her perspective then nothing seem unreachable. To be honest, after such a speech, I thought there couldn’t have been a better ambassador. With GAWW Dr Pauline Long creates the opportunity for African women to have a platform to connect, exchange, and support one another at a global scale.
Join the conversation on social media with #GiveAfricanWomenVoicesBack #GAWW