Her Excellency Denise Bucumi Nkurunziza, First Lady of the Republic of Burundi participated in two high-level events of the Organization of African First Ladies for Development (OAFLAD). The first session was held on September 24, 2019, at United Nations Headquarters under the theme: “Renewing the commitment to gender equality and women’s empowerment in Africa”. The second took place on September 26, 2019 under the theme of “the importance of blood for African women”.
Presenting on women’s economic empowerment and financial inclusion in the first meeting, the First Lady of Burundi said that any sustainable development of any nation depends on the effective participation of all citizens. However, the economic situation of women on the African continent is, in fact, the result of political, social and cultural factors: “The patriarchal system in which African women evolve often tends to confine them to domestic tasks or to lower paid jobs, and most of those who claim or aspire to economic empowerment face many obstacles”.
For her, access to education inclusively and training for all, and the promotion of women’s entrepreneurship, which necessarily involves access to credit, would be among the essential solutions to fight against financial discrimination in Africa. Her Excellency Denise Nkurunziza also proposed the establishment of an African Women’s Bank to accelerate the reduction of the disparity between men and women in access to economic opportunities.
The second meeting of the OPDAD, in which the First Lady of Burundi took part, was marked by the discussion of the panelists on the importance of blood for African women. On this subject, the panelists, during their discussion, pointed out that there are still a large number of women who die by blood loss during childbirth, especially in the sub-Saharan zone. After that, it was also an opportunity to make the closing ceremony by reading a final communique by the First Lady of Burundi, Her Excellency Denise Nkurunziza.