5 things to know about CS Amina Mohamed
Kenya is pushing hard to have her foreign affairs Cabinet Secretary Ambassador Amina Mohamed elected as the first Kenyan chairperson of African Union Commission (AUC), with State officials lobbying 51 out of the 53 AU member states to support her in the January 30 vote.
With numerous accolades to her name, Ms Mohamed, 55, has now set her eyes on the AU top seat, having scaled numerous heights in her three decade long career.
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The only nominee from the East African region competing for the seat in this election, CS Amina is contending for the position alongside 4 others: Moussa Faki Mahamat (Chad), Dr Abdoulauye Bathily (Senegal), Mba Mokuy (Equatorial Guinea) and Pelonomi Venson Moitoi (Botswana).
Here are 5 things to know about Kenya’a AU nominee, even as the vote inches closer:
- She grew up in Kakamega
Ambassador Mohamed, an eighth born in a family of nine siblings, spent her early life in Western Kenya.
She attended Township Primary School in Kakamega and later Butere Girls and Highlands Academy.
- She’s started her career in the Ministry of Local Government
She started her career in 1985 as a legal officer in the former Ministry of Local Governments assigned to assessing World Bank projects and tabling municipal by-laws.
She moved to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs between 1986 and 2002 working as a legal advisor.
- She was the first woman to chair WTO’s General Council
Her diplomatic career started soaring high when she was appointed as Kenya’s Ambassador and Permanent Representative of the diplomatic mission at Geneva.
She was also the Chairman, Coordinator and Spokesperson for the African Group in the WTO’s Human Rights Commission. Amb. Mohamed was the first female chairperson of the International Organization for Migration (IOM).
She has also served as President of the Conference on Disarmament, chair of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) among other prominent appointments with international bodies.
Her last position before being appointed Kenya’s foreign affairs cabinet secretary was United Nations Environmental Programme’s (UNEP) Assistant Secretary –General and was appointed the first female and Deputy Executive Director.
- She is a married mother of 2
In addition to her high-power posts, CS Mohamed is a family woman. In 2002, she married Khalid Ahmed, an Ivy League trained industrialist.
Together, they have two biological children. They also raise four orphans.
- She has 3 State Commendations
Due to her commendable work, CS Mohammed has received three state honours – two from Kenya and one from Italy. These are:
- Elder of theOrder of the Golden Heart of Kenya (EGH)
- Chief of theOrder of the Burning Spear (CBS)
- Knight of theOrder of the Star of Italian Solidarity (Cav.O.S.S.I.)