Malawi First Lady Getrude Maseko Mutharika boycotted a “First Ladies’ Global Call to Action Conference on women and girls’ financial health” convened for the First Ladies of the world when former president Joyce Banda had to make an address.
Mutharika. who was scheduled to attend, sent a last minute apology that she would not attend. It was indicated that Gender Minister Patricia Kaliati would instead represent her.
The conference was by Mrs. Kim Simplis Barrow, the Spouse of the Prime Minister of Belise and Special Envoy for Women and Girls at United Nations General Assembly Building, New York, USA.
Banda spoke on “Call to global action-invest. In and unleash women and girls’ economic potential as part of the solution to building a more just and sustainable world”.
Former President Banda called on the First Ladies and the global leaders to “use their influence and second citizens to promote causes that advance the economic empowerment of women and girls.”
Malawi ex-leader Banda called for political will in mainstreaming policies and programs that reduce gender gaps.
She appealed to the global leaders to enhance support activities that bring incomes into households, as this is key to overcoming challenges faced by women and girls.
Banda further called for increased smart partnerships between governments, private sector and development agencies in taking a holistic approach in addressing women empowerment and development of a girl child.
The conference is aimed establishing a First Ladies Global Fund for women and girls financial health. First Ladies of Turkey, Suleman, Malaysia, Rwanda and Tanzania also addressed the conference.
On Wednesday, September 24, 2014, former President Banda launched Joyce Banda Foundation International Africa Initiative (JBFI Africa) at the United Nations General Assembly Building in New York United States.
The function that drew together international Development Agency, philanthropists, investors, family and friends was held over breakfast. Former President Banda announced the launch of the JBFI Africa with a vision, “African women taking a holistic approach to transform their lives together”
The program will have five pillars: Income generation through agri-business, education, health, leadership and rights. The Initiative will be rolled out in South Africa, Malawi, Kenya, Uganda, DRC, Gabon, Liberia, Ghana, Egypt and Mauritania.