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Inclusion, Diversity and Equality in Africa

Women shall shine like supernovas.

26 min read

don’t know about the rest of the world, but in my country, for the longest time, the patriarchy has been peddling this lie that women cannot get along.

The patriarchy has been peddling this lie that women do not and will never like or love each other. It is also true that for the longest time, most of us have accepted this lie, hook line and sinker.

We have also preached it amongst ourselves, have perpetuated this myth through our actions and have made it a pseudo fact, to our own detriment.

Campaign for a female presidential candidate, and the patriarchy tells us that we women would never unanimously vote for a woman.

The same patriarchy makes us feel that our vote won’t count, not even come close, and because we don’t believe in ourselves, we accept this fallacy.

The same patriarchy that wants to make we women believe that our vote doesn’t count, is the exact same patriarchy that is always saying women are more than men, when they want to defend their right to polygamy. Then they get so offended when some women pull a Polyandry stunt, but I digress….

My post today, is about celebrating the women that the patriarchy wants forgotten….

Fatima Al Fihri. Mileva Maric. Rosalind Franklin…. Have you noted those names? Cool…

Fatima Al Fihri was an Arab Muslim woman who lived in the 9th Century. She is known for setting up the first University in the world… Not in the Arab world, in the whole world. She set up a university, and it was the first to award degrees. The university is still in existence in Morocco and is called the University of al-Qarawiyyin( Al Quaraouiyine or Al-Karaouine).

In the European countries, women were being restricted when it came to joining universities. This badass Muslim woman, set up her own University! How cool is that? Shocking, isn’t it? Don’t believe everything that ISIS, the Taliban and Boko Haram want to spread as the Islamic truth as they oppress women and deny women education. The funniest thing, these patriarchal misguided terrorists will insist on female doctors being the ones to help their wives in labour. Yet they do not want young girls to go to school.

 

Mileva Maric, was a physicist. In that way that irks me to date, she lost her identity when she got married. You may not know her, but you know her husband, the genius Albert Einstein. The scientist who won the Nobel prize for physics. Mileva was quite the student. Getting into University was a problem, but she managed to get there somehow. She was more focused in her studies compared to Albert Einstein. She grounded him and letters were found where he attested to this. It is postulated that she might have been instrumental in him publishing research and him getting the Nobel prize. Only thing,she didn’t add her name to his research because he wouldn’t be taken seriously if a woman’s name was seen on the research. The couple ended up divorcing and for a long while, she set out to prove that she had helped him in her endeavours, something deeply refuted by part of the patriarchy. This is despite the fact that letters between her and husband in happier times allude to the fact that they may have worked as a team.

Rosalind Franklin is yet another woman, that history might not mention much. She was instrumental in the discovery OF DNA. The only names one hears in relation to DNA is Watson and Crick, and they won a Nobel prize for their discovery. You never hear Rosalind Franklin being mentioned yet they solved the mystery of DNA due to her. She had taken a photo of the DNA structure. The two scientists had been struggling to crack the mystery for a while, seeing the photo helped them crack it. They didn’t acknowledge her during their win. If anything, one of them wrote a whole book on Rosalind Franklin, that really discredited her. It is only recently that the scientific world is trying to make amends for what happened to Rosalind.

I have made it a habit to share stories of women who have made it on my timeline, something that consistently seems to annoy chauvinists. The patriarchy cannot stand the idea of women celebrating other women. It is very disturbing to the patriarchy. I think they are slowly beginning to sense that in unity, we will be harder to manipulate.

While we are at it…. I would like you to remember the following names…

Kagure Wamunyu Irene Cruite Ellilta Nega

Kagure Wamunyu is a 29 year old lady. She is a social entrepreneur currently working on her PHD in urban development. At such a young age, she made sure Uber drivers in Kenya, could own their vehicles, she sits on the board of an employment and job recruiting website called Fuzu, and she is currently trying to make education accessible for children from less privileged backgrounds. She made it to the list of Kenya’s women top 40 under 40. The shocking thing is the patriarchal comments on social media,where Kenyan men were busy asking who would marry her with all those degrees.

Bitter members of the patriarchy decided to downplay her achievements.

 

Irene Cruite is a Kenyan medic, her specialty? Radiology.. her CV speaks for her before she opens her mouth. She has trained in Kenya, Ireland and is now registered in the USA, which is quite a feat in itself. Some elements were trying to talk negatively, but her CV speaks for itself.

Ellilta Nega, is an Ethiopian doctor, and from what Ethiopians are saying on social media also an Engineer. She studied both courses simultaneously and managed to graduate. Of course social media is rife with members of the patriarchy trying to downplay her achievements.

Members of the patriarchy asking what she will do with both degrees. Even when you try post a link showing how engineering principles can be applied in medicine, the patriarchy(insecure elements) shut you down.

Funny story, someone who always makes chauvinistic and derogatory statements about women was doing so one day, to a very accomplished friend of mine. I then told him just how accomplished she is and he humbled himself fast. Only for his ego to itch, and he came back fighting saying that men do not marry degrees. Remember this guy is always whining day in day out about women and how we are always plotting to take men’s money.

Women, for the longest time, men have been discrediting women, calling us bimbos and slay queens. Then you see women achieving so much, and the same patriarchy gets insecure and starts downplaying our achievements. In fact Africans ask you who will marry you with all your degrees.

Ladies, ignore the patriarchy. Get that degree, and when they ask you who will marry you with your degree, get a master’s, and PhD degree just to shut them up. We are saying no to mediocrity. We are forces of nature! We shall shine like supernovas. Plus when they ask us who will marry us with all our degrees, our answer should go like, “Definitely not you!”.

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