U.S Ambassador Lisa Anne Johnson receives a gift from Hon. Margaret Mensah, National Council Chairperson at the conclusion of their meeting yesterday
|Story by Pamela Mate
The newly appointed United States Ambassador to Namibia, H.E Lisa Anne Johnson paid a courtesy call on the Chairperson of the National Council, Hon. Margaret Mensah-Williams yesterday (26 February 2017). The visit is Ambassador Johnson’s first official engagement since H.E President Hage Geingob received her diplomatic credentials about two weeks ago.
During the visit, Hon. Mensah-Williams touched on a host of issues and possible areas of cooperation between the two countries as well as highlighting existing programmes that could benefit from renewed enhancement with the involvement of National Council. Central to the discussion points was Gender-Based Violence and Gender Equality, Child Marriages, Basic Human Rights, HIV and Aids, issues relating to female inmates and to the Girl-Child and Human Trafficking amongst others. The Chairperson and the Ambassador discussed their thoughts around this challenges and how best to address them. Mensah-Williams said that as law makers, it is important that they review and pass Bills which speak to the contemporary issues society faces. On her part, the U.S Ambassador said she looks forward to the projects that are set to be rolled out in the coming months. One such project, DREAMS, is built upon the U.S. Agency for International Development's (USAID's) decades of experience empowering young women and advancing gender equality across the sectors of global health, education, and economic growth. H.E Johnson said the programme is targeted to keep adolescent girls in school as statistics show that girls who stay in school have lower HIV infection rates. The programme also aims to delay the adolescent girl’s first sexual encounter in as much as possible to avoid further possible risk of infection.
The Chairperson mentioned that as President of the Bureau of Women Parliamentarians at the Inter-Parliamentary Union, IPU, she is interested in getting the U.S Senate and House of Representatives back in the IPU to allow for more collaboration and participation. Ambassador Lisa Anne Johnson is an American diplomat, and a career member of the U.S Senior Foreign Service. Johnson previously served as Chargé d'Affaires at the U.S. Embassy in Nassau, Bahamas, from 2014 to 2017.