ADDIS ABABA, Oct. 25 (Xinhua) -- The Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), an east African trade bloc, on Thursday hailed Ethiopia for electing Sahle-Work Zewde, as the first female president of the country.
The Ethiopian parliament's two houses earlier on Thursday appointed Zewde as the next Ethiopian president, replacing outgoing President Mulatu Teshome who served the post for the last five years.
In a press statement, the Executive Secretary of IGAD, Mahboub Maalim, said Zewde brings to the Ethiopian Presidency an in-depth knowledge of the east African region and will advance her country and the region in all aspects of life.
"The Executive Secretary expressed his conviction beyond doubt" that Sahle-Work Zewde as a seasoned diplomat with extensive and in-depth knowledge of the region will advance her country and the region towards further progress in all aspects of life," said the statement.
The IGAD statement further noted the elevation of Zewde to the post of the Ethiopian presidency, the first by a female, demonstrates the inclusivity and gender parity at the highest level of policy making spheres since the appointment of the administration of Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed in April.
"I congratulate the government and people of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia for the increased representation of women in the recently formed cabinet where female make up half of the appointees," further said the IGAD statement.
Earlier this month, the Ethiopian parliament approved a 20 strong ministerial cabinet, half of which was filled by females, which included the appointment of Ethiopia's first ever female defense minister.