The Executive Director at the Centre for Health, Human Rights, and Development (CEHURD), Fatia Kiyange, says she is inspired by the speech of Tanzania’s former President Jakaya Kikwete at the ongoing WomenLift Health Global Conference 2024 in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.

The conference, which kicked off today, Saturday, April 6, is one of the largest summits dedicated to advancing women’s leadership in global health and promoting gender equality.

In his address, Kikwete, who led Tanzania from 2005 to 2015, shared how he was intentional about appointing women in positions of leadership in government.

He highlighted the importance of the top leaders’ commitment towards policies on gender equality and initiatives for educating girls and women as crucial factors in promoting women’s leadership in global health, both nationally and internationally.

He emphasized that during his tenure, he ensured that ministries dealing with issues impacting women including justice, health, education, land, community development, gender and children, finance, foreign affairs, and public affairs were led by women themselves.

Kikwete also said that he increased the representation of women in the judiciary as judges to combat injustice effectively.

This, according to Kiyange, is an inspiration, worth copying and associating with.

“Lots of learning at WomenLift Health Global Conf 2024, which started today in Dar es Salaam. Inspired by former President of Tanzania H.E. Kikwete, who was very intentional about putting women as heads of ministries, which mainly deal with women’s issues,” Kiyange said.

Happening just a year before the 30-year review and appraisal of the Beijing Platform for Action in March 2025, the WomenLift Health Global Conference presents a critical platform for authentic conversations and progress checks on the implementation of the Platform for Action.

It will assess the strides made towards achieving gender equality and women’s empowerment, contributing significant barriers to women’s leadership including male privileging, leadership norms, marginalization of minority women, disempowering and non-supportive work environments, stigmatization of women in leadership roles, weak mentorship practices, and a lack of intentionality in supporting women’s public/global health leadership are still persistent.

Through authentic panel discussions and fireside chats, the summit intends to analyse progress made in different regions of the world, foster partnerships that drive meaningful advancements for women leaders in global health and address a comprehensive range of issues faced by women leaders, with a clear focus on generating tangible solutions that will catalyze positive change.

Kungu Al-Mahadi Adam is an experienced Ugandan multimedia Journalist with a background of fact checking and thorough research. He is very passionate about current African affairs particularly Horn of Africa. He...

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