Held 19-20 October, the conference was hosted by Africa University. “Although leadership globally is often associated with men, in reality women have played, and continue to play, significant leadership roles,” said Chitando. "The ideology of patriarchy has constantly sought to undermine women’s leadership roles in society, while overplaying men’s leadership roles.”
In the paper, Chitando examines the role of churches in promoting African women’s transformative leadership. “In the first section of the paper, I outline the major challenges facing the continent,” Chitando said. “In the second section, I highlight the role of the churches in promoting African women’s transformative leadership in addressing the continent’s holistic development.”
In the third section, Chitando outlines how churches in Africa can enhance women’s transformative leadership. “In conclusion, I argue that churches in Africa remain strategically positioned to promote women’s transformative leadership for holistic development of the continent,” Chitando said. “This presentation seeks to highlight the critical role played by African Christian women’s transformative leadership in the continent’s development.”
While recognising that Africa is characterised by multiple religions that include African Traditional Religions, the Baha’i Faith, Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Islam, Rastafari and others, Chitando’s review focuses specifically on African Christian women’s transformative leadership and how it has the potential to change the continent’s fortunes.
“While there have been some very effective male leaders in Africa after independence, the sad truth is that most of them have been guided by very problematic leadership styles,” Chitando said. “Influenced by patriarchy and aggressive masculinities, many male leaders have failed to guide their nations, organisations and communities to prosperity.”
This is despite the fact that the continent is blessed with abundant natural and human resources, Chitando noted. “Africa is incredibly rich and does not need to carry a begging bowl to other continents,” Chitando said.
African Christian women seek to express a new way of leading that recognises the rights and dignity of all,” Chitando said.