Judith Suminwa,, assumes office as DR Congo’s first female PM

Judith Suminwa Tuluka, the first female prime minister of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), has assumed office after she was sworn in on Wednesday.

Before the National Assembly, the lower house of the DRC parliament, Tuluka and the other 54 new government members officially took office after deputies approved Tuluka’s action programme with a required absolute majority.

Tuluka, while presenting her action programme Tuesday afternoon, said she was proud to have broken the “glass ceiling” as the first Congolese woman to serve the country as prime minister.

“By assuming this position, I am fully aware of the historical importance of this moment and the symbolism of this appointment for the Congolese nation. I feel both the weight of the responsibility on me and an immense pride in the idea of representing within the Republic, the culmination of the efforts of all Congolese men and women tending to break the famous ‘glass ceiling’,” noted Tuluka.

She promised to lay the groundwork for an “emerging Congo” by creating around 2.6 million jobs and an academy of mathematics and artificial intelligence in Kinshasa, while laying out actions on national security, economic diversification, infrastructure connectivity, public services, and climate change.

Holder of a master’s degree in applied economics from the Universite libre de Bruxelles of Belgium, Tuluka was appointed state minister for Planning in March 2023. From 2020 to 2023, she also served as deputy coordinator of the Presidential Strategic Monitoring Council, an agency affiliated with the presidential office.

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