Women in Diplomacy

International Women’s Day 2022 – H.E. Halima Abdille Mahmoud, Ambassador of Kenya

In your career have you faced discrimination or hurdles being a woman?

I have not come across direct/overt discrimination due to my gender, but I have encountered several challenges during my years as a leader. This is mainly due to negative cultural stereotypes that believe that women are not as competent as men in leadership. However, I have never let these negative attitudes deter me from my ambition to serve the people during my years in public service.

Women are increasingly participating in leadership roles. Do you see this trend rising and what do you feel should be done so that their participation can be better?

I have noted a tremendous rise in women taking leadership roles across the globe. This is a positive trend because for too long women’s voices have not been heard and it is important that their views and perspectives are taken into consideration. Constitutional safeguards are needed to anchor women into leadership positions. I am pleased to note that Kenya has adopted a progressive constitution that has ensured that no gender constitutes more than a two-thirds majority in leadership positions. A global effort is needed on a multilateral level to ensure that all countries adopt policies that are gender inclusive.



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