Ghanaian women continue to lead in diplomacy and foreign policy in sub-region


Research analysts at the Institute of International Affairs, Ghana ( have commended Ghana for continuing to lead the ECOWAS sub-region in promoting female leadership in diplomacy and foreign policy. These assertions were made in a briefing session for journalists in Accra to mark International Women’s Day 2023.

Miss Elizabeth Dela Tsidi and Mr. Charles Ansre, both research attache’s at the Institute  delivered the briefing session, where they outlined research  analysis, clearly showing that  Ghana continues to be a leader in the Economic Community for West Africa States (ECOWAS) in assuring women of opportunities in leadership.

According to Miss Tsidi, many female Ghanaian diplomats have been spearheading various roles of diplomacy and development that is positively positioning Ghana in the world of diplomacy and foreign policy. She said, “The most obvious example of course is the fact that over the last 10 years, women have led the diplomatic and foreign affairs efforts of the government of Ghana.

This began with Ms Hannah Serwaa Tetteh and has continued with Mrs Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey, and both women have excelled in their roles. For instance, under the tenure of Mrs Botchwey as Foreign Affairs Minister, Ghana successfully negotiated the siting of the AFCFTA headquarters in Accra. It is also during her tenure that Ghana is serving on the UN Security Council as a non-permanent representative. Our record compares favorable in other developed countries including Australia, which has also had women at the helm of the foreign ministers since 2015.”

Sharing more insight in female excellence in leadership positions, the Institutes report mentioned names of significant women including Hannah Tetteh, Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey, Martha Pobee, Anita Kiki Gbeho, Dr. Victoria Kwakwa, and Gertrude Oforiwaa Fefoame who are delivering impact at senior levels with the IMF, World Bank, and the UN.

The Institute however bemoaned that women continue to be underrepresented in ambassadorial positions around the world. Mr. Charles Ansre, a Senior Research Fellow at the Institute indicated that according to sources including the Diplomatic Academy, the  percentage of women ambassadors from the 40 largest economies in the world and the European Union for the year 2022 was 21.6 %. In 2023, the proportion of women ambassadors and permanent representatives of the 193 United Nations (UN) member states as of February 31, was 20.54%. The average proportion of women ambassadors and permanent representatives was reported as 18% for the African Continent. Ghana leads the African continent with 49.5% of Her ambassadors being women, followed by South Africa with 39%. Globally, Ghana is ranked 4th in the percentage of women ambassadors in 2023.” . Mr. Ansre further said  the recognition and celebration of female achievement in diplomacy and foreign policy provides a role-modelling effect for young ladies in Ghana and Africa. He noted, “This is very important and the Institute is committed to highlighting success stories here, in line with its agenda of using role-modelling as an advocacy tool to get more and more ladies interested and applying to global careers.”

The Institute further stated that the full report and statistics will be made public during its commemorations for Women-in-Diplomacy day on June 24, 2023.

The Institute of International Affairs, Ghana ( aspires to be a leading independent non-partisan think tank, with a core focus on the analysis and study of International Relations topics as they apply to Ghana and West Africa. The Institute aspires to achieve impact in the areas of policy formulation, objective analysis and recommendations, capacity building and advocacy.

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