Following the ceremony, Dr Nsanzabaganwa has via twitter account expressed delight for the introduction and commitment for collaboration.
“It was a great honor to engage the African Ambassadors to the AU who play a huge role in AU matters. Looking forward to collaborating with them once elected. Thank you,” she said.
The candidature of Dr Nsanzabaganwa, who is the current Deputy Governor of the National Bank of Rwanda was announced for the first time on Thursday 3rd December 2020 during a ceremony in which the Minister of Foreign Affairs and regional cooperation, Dr Vincent Biruta hosted members of the African Diplomatic Corps for dinner.
Following the event, Dr Nsanzabaganwa thanked the Government of Rwanda, President Paul Kagame for seconding her candidate for African Union Commission Deputy Chairperson position.
If elected, she committed to ‘drive efficiency and accountability as well as financial sustainability, and to personally represent the moral authority and integrity the AU stands for’.
The position is currently held by a Ghanaian, Quartey Thomas Kwesi who took office in 2017. Like the Chairperson of the African Union, the deputy holds the right for four-year term renewable once. Their term will terminate next year.
The current AU Commission chairperson, Faki Mahamat stands many chances to remain the only candidate for the position. He will, however, be required to win two thirds of votes by head of states from member states to stay in office.
It will be the first elections after approving AU steering reforms led by President Paul Kagame.
The reforms incorporate clauses that gender balance should be respected in the leadership of African Union Commission, which means, Mahamat should be deputized by a woman if reelected.
To this end, majority candidates for the Deputy Chairman of the AU Commission are women (5 out of 8) including Dr Nsanzabaganwa.
The Deputy Chairperson of the AUC assists the Chairperson in the execution of his or her functions to ensure the smooth running of the Commission and is in charge of administration and finance.
Dr Nsanzabaganwa, 49, introduced as Rwanda’s candidate to deputize Mahamat has longstanding experience qualifying her fit for the position.
She holds honorary doctorate received from Stellenbosch University in South Africa for her contribution to Rwanda’s development.
Dr Nsanzabaganwa is the Deputy Governor of the National Bank of Rwanda since May 2011. Prior to that, she served as Minister of Trade and Industry (2008-2011) and Minister of State in charge of Economic Planning in the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning (2003-2008).
She is a holder of a PhD in Economics, and a Doctorate of Commerce Honoris Causa, both obtained from Stellenbosch University, South Africa. She is an influential voice in financial inclusion in Rwanda and on international scene as well as a passionate actor in women’s economic empowerment and financial inclusion.
Among others, she is also a member of the Alliance for Financial Inclusion’s Gender Inclusive Finance Committee, an alumna of Women’s World Banking African Advisory Council, and Founding Member and Chairperson of New Faces New Voices Rwanda. She is a wife and mother.