Eleven Political Leaders From Eight African Countries Debate at Yale University

Women are Africa’s backbone. Their special contribution to development and progress in their own countries is recognized by all international bodies, and in the world of politics, women are also taking significant steps.

In order to further encourage women and bolster their leadership in politics, a crucial area for the continent’s future, the third Leadership, Governance and Globalization Forum for Strategic Impact kicks off today at Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut. It is organized by the Women for Africa Foundation in collaboration with Yale, with backing from Banco Santander via Santander Universidades.

Eleven high-profile female politicians from eight African countries are taking part: Hafida Benchehida, a senator, and Fafa Benzerrouki Sid Lakhdar, Chairwoman of the National Human Rights Council, from Algeria; Catherine Samba-Panza, the former President of the Central African Republic; Raymonde Goudou Coffie, the Minister of Health from Ivory Coast; Vitoria Diogo, Minister of Labour, Employment and Social Security from Mozambique; Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah, Deputy Prime Minister and former Minister of International Relations and Cooperation for Namibia; Mariama Gamatié Bayard, Nigerien politician and women’s rights activist, from Niger; Isata Kabia, Minister of State at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, and Sylvia Blyden, Minister of Welfare, Gender and Children’s Affairs, both from Sierra Leone; and Thulisile Nomkhosi Madonsela, the former Public Protector, and Xolelwa Mlumbi-Peter, Chief Director – Africa Multilateral Economic Relations at Department of Trade and Industry, from South Africa.

Directed by Elizabeth H. Bradley, Brady-Johnson Professor in Grand Strategy and Faculty Director of the Yale Global Health Leadership Institute, the forum will involve lectures from Yale University professors who are specialists in matters of leadership, international governance, gender equality, the economics of globalization, political strategy, citizenship, good governance, and more.

In addition to Professor Bradley, María Teresa Fernández de la Vega, President of the Women for Africa Foundation, will be taking part in the opening session to set the forum in motion. Following these sessions at the University, the participants in the forum will travel to Washington, D.C., to hold a series of interviews and meetings with international political and economic representatives of the highest level.

Including the 2017 edition, there are now 29 political leaders from 18 African countries who have attended the forum, the aim of which is to generate a network of women who are influential in public life and committed to democracy, equality and good governance.

This initiative by the Women for Africa Foundation and Yale University has the backing of Santander Bank within the context of the collaboration the bank has maintained with both institutions for several years through Santander Universidades.

Banco Santander is the company that invests most in supporting education around the world (Varkey/UNESCO-Fortune 500 Report), via Santander Universidades. It has 1,200 agreements for collaboration with universities and academic institutions throughout the world. For more information: www.santander.com/universidades.

Source: Banco Santander