Last Update 21:32
Sunday, 20 January 2019

Ethiopia's parliament approves Sahle-Work Zewde as first female president

Reuters , Thursday 25 Oct 2018
Sahle-Work Zewde
File Photo: Sahle-Work Zewde, ex-director-general of the United Nations Office at Nairobi, prepares to address delegates attending the first United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA) in Nairobi, Kenya June 23, 2014 (Photo: Reuters)
Share/Bookmark
Views: 1345
Share/Bookmark
Views: 1345

Ethiopia's parliament has approved senior diplomat Sahle-Work Zewde as the country's first female president, proceedings on state television showed, cementing another shift in the country's political system from Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed.

Sahle-Work is at present U.N. under-secretary general and special representative of the secretary general to the African Union. She replaces Mulatu Teshome Wirtu, who tendered his resignation to parliament earlier on Wednesday.

The president's post is a ceremonial one in Ethiopia. The prime minister, who is the head of state, holds executive power.

"In a historic move, the two Houses has elected Ambassador Shalework Zewde as the next President of #Ethiopia. She is the first female head of state in modern Ethiopia," Fitsum Arega, Abiy's chief of staff, said on Twitter.

"In a patriarchal society such as ours, the appointment of a female head of state not only sets the standard for the future but also normalises women as decision-makers in public life."

Last week, when the prime minister reshuffled his cabinet, he appointed 10 female ministers, making Ethiopia the third country in Africa, after Rwanda and Seychelles, to achieve gender parity in their cabinets.

"When there is no peace in country, mothers will be frustrated. Therefore, we need to work on peace for the sake of our mothers," Sahle-Work told parliament after her approval.

Teshome, who had held the office for five years, depated one year ahead of his term ending, saying he wanted to be part of change and reforms.

Sahle-Work becomes the fourth president since the ruling EPRDF coalition came to power.

Since his appointment in April, Abiy has presided over a raft of reforms that have turned the region's politics on its head, including the pardoning of dissidents long outlawed by the government. 

Short link:

 

Email
 
Name
 
Comment's
Title
 
Comment
Ahram Online welcomes readers' comments on all issues covered by the site, along with any criticisms and/or corrections. Readers are asked to limit their feedback to a maximum of 1000 characters (roughly 200 words). All comments/criticisms will, however, be subject to the following code
  • We will not publish comments which contain rude or abusive language, libelous statements, slander and personal attacks against any person/s.
  • We will not publish comments which contain racist remarks or any kind of racial or religious incitement against any group of people, in Egypt or outside it.
  • We welcome criticism of our reports and articles but we will not publish personal attacks, slander or fabrications directed against our reporters and contributing writers.
  • We reserve the right to correct, when at all possible, obvious errors in spelling and grammar. However, due to time and staffing constraints such corrections will not be made across the board or on a regular basis.
Latest

© 2010 Ahram Online.