Malawian space council chairperson appointed vice-President of African space council

By Twink Jones Gadama

In a historic move for Malawi and the African space industry, Thandikile Mbvundula, chairperson of the Malawi Space Council, has been appointed as a member and vice-president of the African Space Council for a 4-year term. This announcement comes following the 44th meeting of the African Union (AU) Executive Council, where Mbvundula’s new role was confirmed.

The AU Foreign and other ministers gathered for the meeting ahead of the 37th Ordinary Session of the Assembly of the AU Heads of State and Government, set to take place in Ethiopia this weekend. Mbvundula’s appointment as vice-president highlights her expertise and leadership in the field of space science and technology, as well as her dedication to advancing Africa’s presence in the global space arena.

The Malawi Embassy in Ethiopia released a statement congratulating Mbvundula on her appointment, noting her significant contributions to the Malawian Space Council and her commitment to promoting space exploration and research in Africa. As she steps into this new role, Mbvundula will work alongside Ivorian space scientist Dr. Tidiane Ouattara, who was appointed as the inaugural president of the African Space Council.

The African Space Council consists of 10 members, with one male and one female elected from each of the five AU regions. This diverse representation underscores the AU’s commitment to supporting gender equality and inclusivity in the field of space science. Mbvundula’s appointment as vice-president not only highlights her individual achievements but also serves as a testament to the growing recognition of women in the African space industry.

In addition to the appointment of Mbvundula, the 37th AU Leaders’ Summit is set to be a significant event, with over 30 African leaders expected to gather in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, for discussions on key issues facing the continent. The summit presents an opportunity for African nations to collaborate on a wide range of topics, including economic development, security, and regional integration.

As Mbvundula takes on her new role as vice-president of the African Space Council, she brings with her a wealth of experience and a strong commitment to advancing space exploration in Africa. Her appointment signals a new chapter for Malawi and the continent as a whole, showcasing the potential for African nations to play a leading role in the global space industry. With her leadership, Mbvundula is poised to make a lasting impact on the field of space science and technology, contributing to the growth and development of Africa’s space capabilities.


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