Former VP Kazibwe Blasts Current Female Leaders for Bleaching

Dr. Specioza Wandira Kazibwe

In a candid and thought-provoking address at the burial of the esteemed educationist and politician, Hon Joyce Mpanga, former Vice President Dr. Specioza Wandira Kazibwe did not shy away from expressing her concerns about the current generation of Ugandan women leaders. Dr. Kazibwe took the opportunity to address what she sees as a disconnection with heritage, specifically criticizing some contemporary female leaders for engaging in skin bleaching.

Speaking without directly naming anyone, the former VP drew a poignant contrast between the present group of female leaders and those from her era. She reminisced about figures such as the late Joyce Mpanga, Mrs. Rhoda Kalema (known as the "mother of Parliament"), the late Pumla Kisosonkole (a former politician and women's rights activist), and educationist Sarah Ntiro, emphasizing that these women, who handed over leadership to the current generation, embraced their African identity without resorting to altering their natural skin tones.

"When you look at all those women, they handed over leadership to us and tasked us to believe in who we are as African women because we are the custodians of the culture of the African people," Kazibwe remarked at the funeral.

The former VP particularly highlighted the natural beauty of these female leaders, citing examples such as Pumla Kisosonkole and Joyce Mpanga. "None of those women I mentioned ever breached their bodies," she asserted.

Kazibwe, who has served in prominent roles such as the African Union's peace and security, underscored her commitment to cultural preservation. Addressing the contemporary practice of skin bleaching, she stated, "If you are out there and you have cooked your body, I will tell you directly that you need to go and uncook it."

The former Vice President's comments have sparked conversations about the cultural identity and self-esteem of female leaders in Uganda. It remains to be seen how these reflections will resonate within the current generation of women leaders and whether it will prompt discussions on embracing natural beauty and cultural heritage in leadership.


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