Home AFRICA Louise Mushikiwabo: Meet the Rwandan Woman Heading French-Speaking Countries’ Community

Louise Mushikiwabo: Meet the Rwandan Woman Heading French-Speaking Countries’ Community

Louise Mushikiwabo
Louise Mushikiwabo

Until last week, Louise Mushikiwabo was the powerful minister of foreign affairs in the government of Paul Kagame in Rwanda.

She has now been replaced by Dr Richard Sezibera, another powerful figure in Rwanda’s politics. Sezibera is a former secretary general of regional East African Community.

Mushikiwabo will be taking on a new job as

Created in 1970, OIF brings together 84 countries, with the aim of promoting the French language, peace, and sustainable development among members.

For the next four years, Mushikiwabo will be leading OIF since her election at the 17th La Francophonie summit that happened in Armenia capital of Yerevan.

President Paul Kagame was in Yerevan as Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan broke the news of  Mushikiwabo election.

Until 2022, Mushikiwabo will be work from Paris in France.

But who exactly is Mushikiwabo and how did she get here?


Louise Mushikiwabo Profile

Louise Mushikiwabo, the new OIF leader
Louise Mushikiwabo, the new OIF leader

Date of Birth: May 22, 1961

Father: Bitsindinkumi, a Tutsi of the Batsobe clan

Father’s occupation: Farmer, and bookkeeper at a colonial coffee plantation

Mother: Nyiratulira

Child position: Youngest of nine children


Lando Ndasingwa, a businessman and only Tutsi minister in Habyarimana’s last government; he killed during 1994 genocide.

Anne-Marie Kantengwa: Successor of family hotel, Chez Lando; and Rwandan MP between 2003 and 2008.

Education: Mushikiwabo attended her primary and secondary education in Kigali.

Started: National University of Rwanda graduating with a bachelor’s degree in English.

Completed: 1984

High school teacher for two years

1986: Mushikiwabo started on her master’s degree in Languages and Interpretation (French) at the University of Delaware

Work and Career

Worked in US for close to two decades

African Development Bank (in Tunisia) as Communications Director, among other positions

2008: President Kagame appointed Mushikiwabo information minister

2009: Mushikiwabo appointed foreign affairs minister

2018: Appointed OIF boss

Kagame Cabinet Reshuffle: Cabinet Size Slashed, More Women Appointed; Sezibera Replaces Mushikiwabo



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