First Lady Jeannette Kagame Attends Widows Day Celebrations In Gabon


First Lady Jeannette Kagame is today joining hands with the First Lady of Gabon Sylvia Bongo Ondimba in Libreville Gabon to celebrate International Widows Day.

The First Lady Jeannette Kagame is participating in the marking of International Widows Day which is being celebrated for the sixth time.

Other activities slated to mark the day include a visit to Ecole Ruban Vert which was founded by the First Lady of Gabon in 2013 to show that in both the developed and developing world education is the most powerful tool.

The International Widows Day takes place every year on 23rd June, it was initially launched by the Loomba Foundation at the House of Lords in London in 2005. The date, 23rd June, was chosen because on this day, Shrimati Pushpa Wati Loomba, Lord Loomba’s mother, the inspiration for the Foundation, became a widow.

Following this event, both first ladies joined a number of Women Leaders (Femmes Leaders) representing various political and socio-economic institutions, for a luncheon to discuss the status of women empowerment in Gabon.


This visit by First Lady Jeannette Kagame to Gabon also included a tour of the International School ‘RubanVert’, which concluded with a theatrical performance by the students of the school, and the planting of a tree. Founded by First Lady Sylvia Ondimba Bongo in 2013, this school provides innovative education approaches aligned with the drive of the Gabonese government to professionally train, and nurture, the next generations of leaders.

International Widows Day (IWD) is a global day of focus for effective action to raise awareness and help widows and their children around the world who are suffering through poverty, illiteracy, HIV/AIDS, conflict and social injustice.

In 2015 there are an estimated 259 million widows and 585 million children in the world, together with their family members the number is well over a billion people.

Though no fault of their own they lose their husband or father and continue to suffer for the rest of their lives through stigma, discrimination and poverty.

On December 22nd , 2010 at the 65th UN General Assembly, the United Nations recognized June ,23rd as International Widows Day.

Asmaa Mubita is a Kenyan journalist of international repute with over fifteen years of experience in broadcast journalism. Asmaa Mubita began his journalism career at the Kenyan state broadcaster (KBC) and later worked at the KTN owned by the Standard Group and Citizen Television, the flagship brand of Royal Media Services. These exploits together with his reporting experience with the Voice of America, CNN and BBC have been rewarded with local and global recognition.