The Shoes Of Sahle Work -Zwede – The Most Powerful Person In Ethiopia

By Onozasi

The President of Ethiopia resigned recently and someone else took his position. The world has been talking about this because The person who took his position is A Woman! An outstanding woman.  It is clear that Africa has only produced a Female President, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf from Liberia. Now, we have another woman taking this prestigious position and it is a big deal because this is proof that our women are emerging and nothing is stopping them not even their gender.  Who is this Woman that People have been talking about? I would like to let you know that she has been in the game of policy, state restructuring for long a time…

Ambassador Sahle-work

Did you know that she is an Ambassador?

Ambassador Sahle-work Zewde, Her first assignment was to Dakar, Senegal where she served there from 1989 to 1993 with an accreditation to Mali, Cape Verde, Guinea-Bissau, Gambia and Guinea. From 1993 to 2002, she served as Ambassador to Djibouti and Permanent Representative to IGAD. Later on in 2002, she was again assigned to France as an ambassador and Permanent Representative to the UNESCO while accredited to Tunisia and Morocco until 2006. From 2006 to 2009, she was the Permanent Representative of Ethiopia to the AU and UNECA and Director General for African affairs in the Ministry.

She was Raised in Addis Ababa

Born and raised in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, Ambassador Sahle-work Zewde went to Lycee G/Mariam where she finished her elementary and high school education. After successfully completing her baccalaureate, she received a scholarship and went to France at the age of seventeen to study natural science in the University of Montpellier. As the first born of four girls in her family, her father, who was a senior officer in the imperial army, had bestowed her all the responsibility of succeeding in her education as he strongly believed in educating his children.

She Started At The Ministry of Education and Public Relations Department

She then started working at the Ministry of Education in the Public Relations Department as a Public Relations Officer, where she later on headed the Department. After her service in the Ministry of Education, she decided to embark on a new challenge and joined the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.At the Ministry, Ambassador Sahle-work served on different positions.

Sahle-Work Zewde,

She has been Breaking Records

She is the second woman in the history of the Ministry to hold an ambassadorial position following Ambassador Yodit Emiru. Her first assignment was to Dakar, Senegal where she served there from 1989 to 1993 with an accreditation to Mali, Cape Verde, Guinea-Bissau, Gambia and Guinea. From 1993 to 2002, she served as Ambassador to Djibouti and Permanent Representative to IGAD. Later on in 2002, she was again assigned to France as an ambassador and Permanent Representative to the UNESCO while accredited to Tunisia and Morocco until 2006. From 2006 to 2009, she was the Permanent Representative of Ethiopia to the AU and UNECA and Director General for African affairs in the Ministry.

Strolling down memory lane of twenty five years as she was appointed as an ambassador to Djibouti, she recalled “when the government appointed me to Djibouti, I was very reluctant to accept it. I thought being a woman in a Muslim country might not be conducive to getting the two countries closer. I thank the then Foreign Minister who insisted for me to take the position. I am grateful for his encouragement. Looking back, my best years in my diplomatic life were in Djibouti where I can see the impact of my work. She continues, “I try to do the same for others. In mission trips and delegates meetings, I take others with me and give them the opportunity to interact with others, answer questions and allow them to experience diplomacy both by observing as well as acting. I allow them to fail and rise. Delegation is my way of enabling people.”

Ambassador Sahle-work’s robust experience in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has opened doors to work at the international levels. She has more than two decades of progressively responsible experience at the national, regional and international ranks. Following her service in the Ministry, she joined the UN in 2009 to serve as a Special Representative and head of the UN Integrated Peace building Office in the Central African Republic (BINUCA) along her way to the zenith of her achievement.

The triumph of her journey was realized in March 2011 when she became the first person to assume the newly created position as Director General of the UN office in Nairobi (UNON), appointed by the UN Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon.

“Service is my passion, especially serving a country and serving a cause.  I have been a civil servant all my life and public service has been the core of my life. I started working at the Ministry of Education and grew up to its fullness internationally…being at service is indeed my passion.”- Ambassador Sahle-work said,

To every woman out there… Keep Pushing, Keep Working, Change the game, Break The walls, The Time is Now! 

 

Source: Abovewhispers and mfethiopiablog.com

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