Before I delve into celebrating this African star, allow me to oblige us with some knowledge; after all, knowledge is power.
Ever wondered what the whole hullabaloo about the United Nations is? Who are the United Nations and what exactly they do?
The United Nations is an international organization founded in 1945 and committed to maintaining international peace and security; developing friendly relations among nations; promoting social progress, better living standards and human rights.
The United Nations instigated the Millennium Development Goals [MDG’s] – of which I am sure you have heard quite a bit about- in September 2000. It is the United Nations Millennium Declaration, a commitment by nations to a new global partnership to reduce extreme poverty which also set out a series of time-bound targets – with a deadline of 2015.
These eight goals are to:
Eradicate extreme Poverty – Achieve universal primary education – Promote gender equality and empower women – Reduce child mortality – Improve maternal health – Combat HIV and AIDS, malaria and other diseases – Ensure environmental sustainability – Develop a global partnership for development.
With less than a year to go, only time will tell if we will have achieved these laudable aspirations.
So we have established that the UN is mighty important right?
Introducing Zambia’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Mwaba Kasese-Bota.
[A Permanent Representative is the head of a diplomatic mission to one of various international organisations in this case, the UN.]en.wikipedia.org
Dr. Mwaba joins a roll call of distinguished women from Africa and beyond who have served and represented their countries at the United Nations.
Prior to her appointment, Dr. Mwaba wasn’t resting on her oars though. Born on 16 May 1969, she graduated from the University of Zambia with a Bachelor of Science in Human Biology. She attended the University of Zambia’s School of Medicine and graduated with a General Medicine and Surgery degree. From 2001 to 2002, she attended the University of Alabama in Birmingham, where she obtained a Master’s degree in Public Health and Epidemiology, with an emphasis on HIV research.
She held several positions at the Health Ministry between 1996 and 2004, among them Programs Manager at the National AIDS Council and General Medical Officer and Epidemiologist, an obvious choice considering her major.
From January 2007 to July 2008, Dr. Mwaba was a consultant to the Zambia Society for the Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect, after being assigned by the Ministry of Health to work at the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) as an HIV/AIDS Officer and Prevention of Mother-to-Child Transmission Specialist from May 2005 to December 2006.
Obviously committed to her mission, Dr. Mwaba served as a HIV Orphans and Vulnerable Children and Youth Adviser at the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), from July 2008 until November 2011 concurrently chairing the United States Government Orphans and Vulnerable Children Committee and the Care and Support Technical Working Group.
While managing USAID-funded Orphans and Vulnerable Children projects, she was a member of the Palliative Care Technical Working Group in the Ministry of Health.
With a repertoire of hands-on experience, it seemed inevitable that she would continue to go up. As the Zambian Rep, Dr. Mwamba canvasses for intensive efforts to combat poverty with special attention on employment generation especially for the youth and other vulnerable groups.
According to Dr. Mwaba, Zambia is one of the countries that has succeeded in attaining the MDGs on universal provision of primary education. Brother and Sister Zambians, do you agree?
Dr. Mwamba has presented at international conferences on subjects related to HIV and AIDS as well as orphans and vulnerable children. She has sat on committees dedicated to the prevention of child abuse and neglect.
The truth is, whether male or female, as an Entrepreneur or a career-person –because everybody may not be well-suited for entrepreneurship- you can soar to heights you have only ever dreamed of because persistent diligence does pay.
Ponder. Learn.Think. Act. Repeat!