Azania Mosaka says former United States first lady Michelle Obama has set the bar high for first ladies around the world. Her involvement in social issues in her country and public appearances have raised questions as to what is the role of a first lady?
Gender Politics at the University of Stellenbosch Professor chair Amanda Gouws says most African countries are suffering from first ladies syndrome. The first ladies capture some part of the state and control it on behalf of their husbands, she says.
First ladies need to strike a balance between having their own interests but then also become involved in the affairs of government in a way that can be viewed as interfering.— Professor Amanda Gouws - Chair in Gender Politics at the University of Stellenbosch
The first ladies can play a very important roles around gender based violence and how we can be supportive that deal with gender based violence.— Professor Amanda Gouws - Chair in Gender Politics at the University of Stellenbosch
Listen to whether South Africa has ever witnessed the first ladies syndrome.