Evita from Pretoria

Evangelie Bezuidenhout alias Pieter-Dirk Uys
Von Bettina Ambach
Südwestrundfunk SWR 2:
Monday, 2nd November 2009, 7:20 – 8:00 p.m.

Ma Ellen
is cleaning up

Women power in Liberia
Von Bettina Ambach
A Deutschlandfunk / Westdeutscher Rundfunk co-production Feature Programme
25th of november 2008

Westdeutscher Rundfunk (WDR 5):
1st of march 2009 from 11-12 a.m.
2nd of march 2009 from 20-21 p.m.

Caterpillar changing
to butterfly

From Palala to meet the President
Von Bettina Ambach

Südwestrundfunk SWR 2:
Wednesday, 15th july 2009, 7:20 p.m.

Liberia's President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf / Ida Moore and her Kpelle women's association

In 2003 Liberia emerged from 14 years of devastating civil war. 300 kilometers away from the capital Monrovia, Kpelle women in the Gbargna region decided that they had had enough of all the killing, the violence and the omnipresent corruption. They challenged the traditional role distribution in their villages: asked for a voice in the political decision making process, organized elections among themselves and created a women's association which started to play the role of a parallel village administration – independent from the men. They became land owners, opened small businesses, thanks to micro-credits, collected money to finance health projects.
In Monrovia too, as of January 2006 a woman is in charge: Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, also called >'Ma Ellen'. Four female ministers sit in her cabinet, and even the Chief of Police is a woman.
The first democratically elected female President of Africa and the Kpelle women around Gbargna – do they perhaps represent the hope for a better future? Does democracy in Africa need more powerful women? Or will women become as corrupt and power thirsty like so many powerful specimen of the opposite sex?