Ethiopia appoints its first ever female president to ‘set the standard for future’

President Sahle-Work Zewde takes the oath of office. Photo: Reuters

Ethiopian lawmakers unanimously elected the country’s first female president on Thursday, days after approving one of the world’s few “gender-balanced” cabinets as the country’s dramatic reforms continue.

As seasoned diplomat Sahle-Work Zewde assumed the largely ceremonial post, many celebrated Africa’s only current female head of state. The continent’s first female president, Liberia’s Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, left office this year.

“Congratulations, Madam President! Women do make a difference. We are proud of you!” the female president of the United Nations General Assembly, María Fernanda Espinosa Garces, said in a Twitter post.

“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,” the chief of staff for Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed said on Twitter.

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About Cholo Brooks 7568 Articles
Joel Cholo Brooks is a Liberian journalist who previously worked for several international news outlets including the BBC African Service. He is the CEO of the Global News Network which publishes two local weeklies, The Star and The GNN-Liberia Newspapers. He is a member of the Press Union Of Liberia (PUL) since 1986, and several other international organizations of journalists, and is currently contributing to the South Africa Broadcasting Corporation as Liberia Correspondent.