First Lady Mrs Jeannette Kagame was, on Saturday, awarded the African Women of Excellence Awards (AWEA) for her outstanding work on empowering women and her overall contribution to Africa's development.
The awards are an initiative hosted by the African Union Commission (AUC) and the Diaspora African Forum, which recognise the contributions of women of African descent across the world. Since 2015, the AWEA has honoured game changers, rule breakers, and trailblazers.
Particularly, Her Excellency Jeannette Kagame was recognised for her efforts in educating and empowering girls and women in Rwanda, especially the most vulnerable ones.
Rwanda’s High Commissioner in South Africa Vincent Karega, who received the award on behalf of Jeannette Kagame, thanked the event organisers for awarding the First Lady based on all her commitments and achievements and expressed his gratitude to have a First Lady of Excellence.
Rwanda hosted the 2017 edition of the awards. This year’s event was held in Sandton, South Africa. More than 10 of Africa’s best and brightest women were honoured for the work that they do in business and their communities.
Winnie Madikizeka-Mandela and the queen of soul Aretha Franklin were among the recipients of the awards for their lifelong advocates for promoting equality for women and girls everywhere.
The women selected for awards honours represent diverse backgrounds, personal characteristics, and life experiences.
The ceremony was co-chaired by AUC deputy chairperson Kwesu Quartey and Diaspora African Forum ambassador and head of mission Erieka Bennett, who paid tribute to Madikizela-Mandela, who died in April.