This week, the African Union elected its first female chair. South African lady doctor, as in she is a doctor of the female gender and not a euphemism for a gynaecologist, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma beat the incumbent Jean Ping of Gabon to win the sweet title of head of the African Union Commission.
Maryan Osman-This is a (wo)mans world.
artwork graciously provided by Amanda Vincent.
Good Morning Amanda, this week has been an excellent week for those of us lucky enough to be endowed with a Vagina.
Being my friend for as many years as you have, you are intimately acquainted with the stress and reluctance I feel in feeling things. I find it hard to express my feelings towards things and stuff, for the most part because I find it difficult to actually compartmentalise and categorise them myself, by in large, I don’t know what I feel. But today I feel good about the world, almost hopeful.
First, I turn your attention to the African Union, an international organisation I have mentioned to you in numerous conversations, and with whom I have a profoundly complicated relationship. At times I love them, for things like promoting trade between member states, and helping in peace negotiations in shockingly volatile conflicts like Darfur, and Somalia. And at times, I weep for humanity, because of the depressing amounts of corruption that is facilitated by the bureaucracy of the AU, or you know, shielding war criminals from international justice, awkward stuff like that.
This week, the African Union elected its first female chair. South African lady doctor, as in she is a doctor of the female gender and not a euphemism for a gynaecologist, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma beat the incumbent Jean Ping of Gabon to win the sweet title of head of the African Union Commission. She won with a 60% majority, 37 nations voted in favour of the Doctor/Diplomat out of a possible 54 nations. All round, sweet sweet news, coz as you know, women have had a hard time in the last few millennia’s trying to break into the top roles.
Now a brief word on the beaut that is Nkosazana, she is a former anti-aparteid activist, who went on to become the Minister of Health under the premiership of that little known South African leader Nelson Mandela. Then she continued her reign of awesome as Minister of Foreign Affairs for a decade under the premiership of Thabo Mbeki (pronounced mmmm…Bekci) and Kgalema Molanthe. And then she went on to become Minister of Home Affairs under Jacob Zuma’s leadership, a man who you may like to know is her ex-husband. Though that isn’t saying much, President Zuma is a charming man who also happens to be a polygamist, being married six times, and estimated to have 20 children. I know what you’re thinking Mandy, “that is more than enough women to keep one man busy”. But no, unremarkably the man also finds time to cheat on all of his wives and keeping several mistresses. One of which was living with Aids. Which is not a massively big deal, people with Aids need love too. However, when asked about the fact that he had unprotected sex with a person infected with Aids, Mr Zuma basically said “it’s cool guys, I totes had a shower afterwards”. What a stand-up guy. Oh, and did I mention he was the leader of nation rumoured to have 5.6 million people living with aids. But the real sting of irony lies in the fact that his government had this awesome Aids programme designed to help halt the spread of the viral disease called “one boyfriend, one girlfriend”. *sigh*.
So all in all, this woman gives me more hope than I feel is deserved in international relations. I can’t wait for my spirit to be broken by some scandal soon.