Friday, June 14, 2024

Meet the Woman Uhuru, Kibaki and Moi Always Hired

Foreign Affairs Cabinet Secretary Amb. Amina Mohamedhas cut a niche for herself in Kenya and would probably go into history books as the best Minister to ever serve in her current docket.

Her appointment into the Foreign Affairs Department by President Uhuru Kenyatta has seen distinguished world-class leaders including US President Barack Obama visit the country.

Amina’s impressive work in the docket has also been earmarked by high-profile meetings being held in the country with the two recent ones being TICAD and UNCTAD.

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The ambassador’s notable career has seen her serve in the three regimes of Kenya’s Presidents; Uhuru, Mwai Kibaki and Daniel Moi.

Her appointments have always been in powerful dockets such as Cabinet Minister (Uhuru era), Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Justice, National Cohesion and Constitutional Affairs (Kibaki era) and Permanent Representative of Kenya to the United Nations Office at Geneva (Moi era).

However, looking at where the 54-year-old lady now is, one would think she was born with a silver spoon in her mouth, but no that was not the case.

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Born as the eighth born in a family of nine, Amina’s childhood was defined by a lot of struggle with her mother going to different heights to ensure she got the best education.

“I will always be indebted to my mother who, though not formally educated, strongly believed in education,” Ms Mohamed was quoted by a local daily.

After attaining a degree in Comparative law at Kiev University School of International Law and International Relations in Ukraine, the diplomat landed her first Government job in 1986 at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs as the legal advisor – from there her success story kicked off.

As a woman, Ms Mohamed has made tremendous strides being the first woman to have chaired the three most important bodies of the World Trade Organization – the Trade Policy Body, the Dispute Settlement Body and the Governing General Council of the WTO.

She was also the first woman to head the Kenyan Foreign Affairs docket as well as the first African and the first female Chairperson of the Council of the International Organisation for Migration.

In the aftermath of the 2007/2008 post-election violence, the Kakakamega-born diplomat served as PS in the Ministry of Constitutional and Justice Affairs where she played a crucial role in the passage of Kenya’s current constitution.

In 2010, she left the Justice Ministry after she was elected President of the UN International Conference on Transnational Crime in Vienna, Austria, for a two-year period.

In 2011, she was appointed by the UN Secretary-General as the UN Assistant Secretary-General and Deputy Executive Director of the UN Environment Programme (UNEP). During her tenure, UNEP was upgraded from a 58- member Governing Body to the UN Environment Assembly, encompassing all members of the United Nations.

The mother of two has been described as a committed international civil servant who is an excellent strategist and visionary.

Mohamed’s latest milestone in her career was marked on Monday when President Kenyatta announced that he had forwarded her name for consideration in the position of Chairperson of the African Union Commission (AUC).

Mr Kenyatta noted that she was Kenya’s best choice, highlighting how beneficial she had been to the country.

Ms Mohamed is multilingual and speaks 5 languages, she is proficient in English, Swahili, Russian, and Somali as well as working knowledge in French.

Amina Mohamed

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