25 facts about Tanzania's new President Samia Suluhu Hassan

| March 19th 2021 at 12:00:00 GMT +0300
President Samia Suluhu Hassan is the sixth president of the United Republic of Tanzania (Photo: Courtesy)

Rumours about President Magufuli’s health illuminated Vice President Samia Suluhu Hassan from the background she had operated from for the last five years she has been Tanzania’s vice president.

When she made the public announcement of President Magufuli’s passing, it became apparent that she was taking over as the next president of Tanzania.

President Suluhu was sworn in at 10am Friday March 19, 2021 (Photo: Courtesy)

As a Zanzibari and Muslim woman, Ms Suluhu’s presidency will carry the weight of having to prove a point in the mainland Tanzania, a country that has battled male chauvinism and dotted with religious conflicts and mistrust between the mainland Tanzania and the Sultanate of Zanzibar.

We look at 25 quick facts about the trailblazer:

  1. She is 61-years-old and was born on January 27, 1960
  2. She is from the Sultanate of Zanzibar, where she had her primary and secondary school education
  3. Studied statistics at Zanzibar Institute of Financial Administration
  4. Worked as a clerk in the Ministry of Planning and Development after college. She also had a stint at World Food Programme working on project in 1992
  5. She has a master degree in community economic development from a joint program between Open University of Tanzania Southern New Hampshire University, USA
  6. She has a postgraduate diploma in Economics from Manchester University
  7. She is married to an agriculture officer and together they have four children, three boys and a girl
  8. Her daughter is also a politician and is a member of the Zanzibar House of Representatives
  9. She has been in active politics for 20 years. She was first elected to the House of Representative in Zanzibar in 2000
  10. Served as minister in President Amar’s Zanzibar from 2000 to 2010
  11. Joined the National Assembly in 2010 as the MP for Makanduchi constituency
  12. Served as Minister in the office of Vice President during President Jakaya Kikwete’s final term
  13. She is the first Zanzibari to hold the office of Vice President in United Republic of Tanzania
  14. She was a vice-chair of the Constituent Assembly – body tasked with drafting the country’s new constitution
  15. She was the first female running mate on a CCM party ticket
  16. She is the first female VP of Tanzania and only the second in East Africa
  17. She has been the face of Tanzania at international meetings since 2015 (The President hardly traveled out of the country)
  18. She is Tanzania’s first female president and the country’s sixth president
  19. She is East Africa’s second female president after Sylvie Kinigi of Burudi
  20. She is the second woman to head a country in East Africa
  21. She is the first Zanzibari after Ali Hassan Mwinyi to lead the United Republic Tanzania
  22. As President, she will choose to appoint her own cabinet and even change some of Dr Magufuli’s policies
  23. She is the second serving female president in Eastern Africa after Ethiopia’s Sahle-Work Zewde. However, Ms Zewde’s post is ceremonial
  24. She is eligible to contest for another five-year term as president as this will deemed her first term
  25. Her ascent to power will be the first time Tanzania is changing leaders outside of elections

Related Topics
Samia Suluhu HassanAchieving WomanPresident Magufuli
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