It’s not very often we hear of women who are presidents in their time, but is it because they have been seen as inadequate to rule? Does the society appreciate and welcome the idea of having a female President? Would they rule any way different from men that have stood for their countries?Questions that run through the minds of many when considering having a female president. Fortunately, there have been women who have ruled their country to glory and if you ask me have proven to be better leaders till date.
The world is about to welcome Her first female American President, well that’s if Hillary Clinton wins but it sure proves that women are beginning to find strength in political positions. I wouldn’t say they are tired of taking the back seat but have found greater value and potentials to rule.
Here are the top 5 African female presidents of all time
Slyvie Kinigi: 1993-1994 (Acting Head of State, Burundi)
Slyvie Kinigi was elected Acting Head of State, Burundi, in October 1993, attaining the position of the first woman in Africa to hold the presidential position, setting an example and giving courage to other women who desired to hold a reputable position and lead with authority and power making a difference in their generation.
After the assassination of Melchoir Ndadaye, Kinigi managed to gather 15 of the 22 ministers to continue to govern, effectively becoming the Acting Head of State.
Ellen Johnson Sirleaf: 2006–Present (President, Liberia)
Sirleaf, is the first female head of state in Africa. After contesting for the position in 1997 and lost, loosing didn’t stop her from trying again and winning in 2005, proving to everyone that it’s ok to fail but it’s never okay to sleep in failure. Her resilient spirit got her currently listed amongst the 70th most powerful women in the world according to Forbes.
She also won the Nobel Peace Prize for her non-violent struggle for the safety of women and for women’s rights to full participation in peace-building work.
Rose Francine Rogombé: 2009-2014 (President of Gabon)
She started from being the Acting President of Gabon from June 2009 to October 2009 and in February 2010; she was elected president of Gabon by constitution.
She was an amazing lawyer by profession, serving Gabon through to December 2014. She died shortly after stepping down in a hospital in Paris.
Agnès Monique Ohsan Bellepeau: 2012 and 2015 (Acting President, Mauritius)
An outstanding journalist by profession, She became the acting President of Mauritius from 31 March 2012 to 21 July 2012 when Sir Anerood Jugnauth resigned up to the inauguration of Kailash Purryag to the office.
She was again acting President from 29 May 2015 to 5 June 2015 when Kailash Purryag resigned up to the inauguration of Ameenah Gurib to the office.
Joyce Hilda Banda: 2012–2014 (President, Malawi)
Banda, the educator and grassroots women’s rights activist with bags of responsibilities. Before she became president, she was first the Minister of Foreign Affairs from 2006 to 2009 and then Vice-President of Malawi from May 2009 to April 2012 as the first vice president of Malawi.
Banda took office as president following the sudden death of President Bingu wa Mutharika. She was Malawi’s fourth president and its first female president.
Her resilient nature took her to the 40th most powerful woman in the world and the most powerful woman in Africa.
Ameenah Firdaus Gurib-Fakim: 2015–Present (President, Mauritius)
She began her career as a Lecturer at the Faculty of Agriculture at the University of Mauritius, served as the Dean of the Faculty of Science and Pro Vice-Chancellor at the University of Mauritius from 2004 to 2010. She has a Ph.D in Organic Chemistry from the University Exeter, UK.
In 1989, she was awarded the C.Chem award by the Royal Society of Chemistry in recognition of her skills and contribution to the field. She has written and co-edited 26 books, apart from numerous articles in the field of biodiversity conservation and sustainable development.
She has served as the Managing Director of the Centre for Phototherapy and Research and Professor of Organic Chemistry with an endowed chair at the University of Mauritius. Prime Minister Anerood Jugnauth’s ruling coalition nominated her for the post of the President.