Dame Patience to resign as African First Ladies Peace Mission President

By Post Nigeria April 23, 2015 14:21

Dame Patience to resign as African First Ladies Peace Mission President

Following the defeat of the incumbent President Goodluck Jonathan at the recently held March 28 polls, the First Lady, Dame Patience Jonathan has called for an emergency meeting of the African Ladies Peace Mission, AFLPM, where she has served as President since July 2012.

Mrs Jonathan was elected President of the group at its seventh summit held in Abuja in July 2012 and was expected to have a two year term ending in July 2015, but with the exit of her husband from office, she will have to hand over as President to someone else.

The mission comprises of wives of Presidents of all African countries.

Owing to the fact that she will cease to be Nigeria’s First Lady from May 29 when her husband will handover power to the President-elect, Muhammadu Buhari, Mrs. Jonathan has summoned an emergency summit of the mission for May 15 for the purpose of electing her successor.

According to a copy of the invitation to members dated April 6 and personally signed by the President’s wife, she explained that she summoned the emergency summit to ensure that there would not be a leadership vacuum in the organization as it happened in 2010 when her predecessor left office without handing over.

She said her desire was to put in place a standard that would strengthen the organization and ensure effective mechanism to guarantee seamless takeoff for the incoming leadership.

Despite her valid reasons for conveying the emergency session, malicious individuals are speculating that the session is being called prior to the handover so the incoming First lady, Aisha Buhari, would not be in the running.

The letter in part reads, “Your Excellency may recall that Nigeria was re-elected President of the AFLPM at the 7th Summit in Abuja in July 2012. With the recent election in my country and a new government coming on board from May 29, 2015, it has become necessary to convene an emergency summit of the AFLPM to facilitate a smooth and formal hand over to the new Executive Committee that will pilot the affairs of the Peace Mission for the next two years.

“The Emergency Summit is proposed for Friday, May 15, 2015 at the Interim Secretariat of the African First Ladies Peace Mission, Abuja by 2pm. The Summit will, however, be preceded by the 4th meeting of the Executive Bureau by 9am, on May 15 at the same venue. The Bureau Meeting is for members of the Executive Bureau, comprising South Africa, Sudan, Cameroon, Libya and Congo Brazzaville.

“In light of the above, may I appeal to Your Excellency to give utmost consideration to attending the Emergency Summit in order to ensure that our organization maintains its current momentum.

“We will deeply appreciate your kind early response to help us in planning the Summit, in view of limited time available to us.”

The AFLPM, which aims at promoting peace and harmony in Africa, was established in 1995 after the United Nations’ Conference on Women in Beijing, China.

In her tenure as the President of the AFLPM, Mrs. Jonathan ensured the delivery and distribution of relief materials to war torn countries like Mali, Burundi and other countries ravaged by conflict in Africa.

She traversed the nooks and crannies of the African continent preaching and advocating peace in war torn countries and also called for the renewed protection of African children against all forms of hazards from physical to technological.

Patience Jonathan subsequently championed for the reduction of teenage pregnancies in Africa when she visited Sierra Leone, where the formal declaration was made.

As the President of the AFLPM, the 12th Summit of the Organization of African First Ladies against HIV/AIDS, OAFLA, in Addis Abba, Ethiopia, was another major achievement and milestone for Dame Jonathan, to address the African continent peace promotion as an instrument of sustainable development in Africa.

She opined that peace had become a unifying factor for the world and as a central theme for the development of any nation.

Mrs. Jonathan bagged the Global Woman Leader Award in Paris, France, due to her unrelenting humanitarian pursuit in giving selfless services to children and women across Africa.

She was also inaugurated on the World Stage as ITU Child online Protection Champion in Switzerland, for her relentless efforts in the pursuit of the protection and empowerment of children in Nigeria and across Africa