Rwanda’s Dr. Monique Nsanzabaganwa was on Saturday elected the African Union Commission (AUC) Deputy Chairperson, by 42 votes out of a possible 55-member state votes, in an election that saw the incumbent chairperson Moussa Faki Mahamat retain his position.
Dr. Nsanzabaganwa, who until now has been the Deputy Governor of the National Bank of Rwanda (BNR) pipped two other candidates to the position, Uganda’s Pamela Kasabiiti Mbabazi, who got 10 votes and Djibouti’s Hasna Barkat Daoud, who got only two votes.
“Congratulations to Rwanda’s candidate, @mnsanzabaganwa on her election as Deputy Chairperson of the African Union Commission, elected by 42 votes out of 55 member states,” the Ministry of Foreign Affairs tweeted follow the elections which took place during the 34th Session of the African Union General Assembly.
In the same election, the Chadian diplomat, Faki, who has been at the helm of the AUC for the last four years, was overwhelmingly re-elected, polling 51 votes out of a possible 55.
Rwanda fronted Dr. Nsanzabganwa last year for the position. The 49-year-old mother of three, is a holder of a PhD in Economics (2012) and a Doctorate of Commerce Honoris Causa, both obtained from Stellenbosch University, South Africa.
She was awarded the honorary doctorate in 2017 for greatly contributing to country development.
“My very sincere gratitude and appreciation for the trust and honor that the Heads of States and Government of the African Union have bestowed on my country and in my person. I commit to serve with dedication and to the best of my ability under your wise guidance,” Dr. Nsanzabaganwa tweeted, adding the hashtag #TheAfricaWeWant.
She has been Deputy Governor of the Central Bank since 2011 and prior to this, she served as Minister of Trade and Industry between 2008 and 2011.
Prior to this, she was Minister of State at the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning between 2003 and 2008.
Dr. Nsanzabaganwa is chairperson of New Faces New Voices, Rwanda chapter. The organization promotes the access to finance among women.
She is also the vice president of Unity Club, an organization of Rwandan leaders and their spouses.
President Paul Kagame last year said that Rwanda was supporting Faki Mahamat for the second term. Both the African Union Commission Chairperson and the Deputy chairperson are elected for a 4-year term, renewable once.
“Deeply humbled by the overwhelming and historic vote of confidence by AU Member States by voting 51 out 55 to extend my mandate at the helm of the AUC Commission for another 4 years. My congratulations to @mnsanzabaganwa who was elected as deputy Chairperson. Together we WILL,” Faki Mahamat tweeted.