Queen Letizia with Liberian President, Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf./ Photo: Royal Household
Victor Tuda. Madrid
Queen Letizia yesterday closed the annual meeting of the Women for Africa Foundation with a speech that praised the work of this body and stressed the importance of equality and education in facilitating greater access by women to positions of power.
“Equality means many things but most of all it represents the ability to chose a life plan”, the Queen said. “It enables everyone to go where they wish by their own effort”, she continued.
Similarly, she pointed out the relevance of education, understood as “doing everything necessary in all spheres” to develop boys and girls and to ensure the “access of women to positions of power, there where political and economical decisions are made”.
One of the most eagerly awaited guests was the President of Liberia and Nobel Peace Prize Winner, Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, who asked for support for the programmes to eradicate poverty which, according to her empower the women who are “the true resistance fighter of every African economy”. Johnson-Sirleaf also reminded the meeting that the women who live in the rural areas on the African continent “are the ones we really have to support”.
Queen Letizia attended the annual meeting of the Women for Africa Foundation
The President of Women for Africa, María Teresa Fernández de la Vega, told the meeting the road to equality “was bogged down “and called for equality to be placed at the centre of all agendas, as it was a “constituent element of democracy”. There can be no healthy democracy where we women are not in the places where decisions are made,” she said forcefully.
For her part, the former Nigerian minister Obiageli Ezekwesili, prime mover of the ‘Bring Back Our Girls’ platform, launched a powerful message against the lack of resolution of conflicts, “which increases the level of inequalities” and regretted the lack of initiatives “to put an end to the horrors we are experiencing nowadays”.
In addition, the Mayor of Madrid, Manuela Carmena, opened the forum by stressing the importance of African culture and literature and emphasising the importance of supporting women’s leadership on a continent “so close and so far at the same time”. The President of the Banco Santander, Ana Patricia Botín, spoke in the name of the Foundation and highlighted the 14 projects that the bank has developed in cooperation with it.