Former president Joyce Banda Thursday joined a scope of prolific local female leaders from various sectors in encouraging their counterparts on the essence of focus, resilience and hard work for them to contribute effectively towards personal and national economic development goals.
She was speaking when she opened a two-day virtual Women’s Conference held under the theme ‘Defining Women in a Dynamic World’ hosted by the Institute of Bankers (IoB).
She underscored the essence of education and skills development, among other factors, in nurturing leaders.
“Yes, leaders are born, but they are born with only 30 percent of the leadership traits and 70 percent of traits have to be added on by the society through education, mentorship, support, training and protection,” Banda said.
She called on women holding key positions in society to be in the fore in encouraging others to be equally competitive.
In her address, Bankers Association of Malawi (Bam) Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Lyness Nkungula hailed strides the country had made in addressing challenges women face in their quest of becoming competitive in the society.
“Of course, women are fit to lead. Of course, career and motherhood can go together. It is obvious but, unfortunately, this still needs to be said.
“Having women in leadership positions should become the norm, not the exception. And, slowly but steadily, Malawi is changing,” Nkungula said.
Other women speakers include Mybucks Banking Corporation CEO and Bam Vice President Zandile Shaba, Chief of Health Services at the Ministry of Health Queen Dube, Bayer Malawi Country Head Chikondi Ng’ombe, Nico Group Head of Marketing Lorraine Phiri and Nora Mpinganjira, an entrepreneur.
The conference provided a platform for participants to form links and become agents of.
The women participants were also expected to learn from leaders in diverse fields, participate in important discussions, share personal stories, ask meaningful questions and network with a dynamic community of individuals who want to ignite and inspire the leader inside.