A landmark Women in Tourism Indaba was held last week in Windhoek, where a number of stand out females involved in the tourism sector were highlighted. With this series we tell each of their stories.
Patron for Women in Tourism
Hon. Minister Netumbo Nandi-‐Ndaitwah, MP
As a women activist with a love of nature, the Hon. Nandi-‐Ndaitwah is no stranger to issues that effect women and the environment, and has always been keen to take on a challenge. Her in-‐depth understanding of the tourism industry and the shaping Namibia’s environmental policy around tourism – encouraging the growth of an industry in remote and rugged landscapes to the benefit of rural people, tour operators and visitors alike – and its power to transform the lives of women, makes Hon. Nandi-‐Ndaitwah the perfect Patron for Women in Tourism.
The Minister has found challenges in education and in various leadership roles. She has been a Member of Parliament of the Republic of Namibia since 1990 and has held a wide range of portfolios including Minister of Women Affairs and Child Welfare, Minister of Information and Broadcasting, Minister of Environment and Tourism, and she has served internationally in different bodies including being Namibia’s Representative at the UN Commission in the state of women for three years prior to the holding of the 4th commission on women, before assuming leadership of this ministry in 2012 as the Minister of Foreign Affairs.
The Minister also sports a strong academic background, with a Master’s Degree in Diplomatic Studies from the University of Keele in the UK, and post-‐graduate diplomas in International Relations and Public Administration and Management from Keele and Glasgow universities.
Developing a tourism industry from scratch in post-‐independence Namibia has required vision from the Minister and her predecessors, combined with organizational skills. Nandi-‐Ndaitwah was the Rapporteur General of the Fourth World Women’s Conference in Beijing and served as the negotiator for the African Group in preparation for the conference. In 2012, Hon. Nandi-‐Ndaitwah was named the Hospitality Association of Namibia’s Personality of the Year in Tourism.
Bringing Namibia onto the world stage as a tourism destination is a passion for Netumbo Nandi-‐Ndaitwah. She is keenly aware of the challenges faced by women in tourism, and the effects to bring economic benefits to rural populations, whilst at the same time conserving the eco-‐system and wildlife for future generations.
As our Patron for Women in Tourism, we have chosen an inspirational leader. As the Minister herself says, whether in Cabinet or in the field, “she relishes the challenge.”
Women in Tourism – Lena Florry
Women in Tourism – Melba Tjahere
Women in Tourism – Glenda Manthe-Grobler
Women in Tourism – Landine Guim