Zimbabwe’s First Lady congratulates Senator Dr Rasha Kelej on her nomination as African Woman of the Year 2020



By an official letter, Senator, Dr Rasha Kelej, CEO of the Merck Foundation (www.Merck-Foundation.com) was praised by the longtime partner HE Ms. AUXILLIA MNANGAGWA, The First Lady of the Republic of Zimbabwe and Merck Ambassador More than a Mother, upon his appointment as Member of the Egyptian Senate (2020-2025) by the President of Egypt, HE Mr. ABDEL FATTAH AL-SISI play an important advisory role with regard to health, sustainable economic and social development in Africa and opportunities for collaboration. The First Lady of Zimbabwe also congratulated Rasha Kelej on her appointment as ‘African Woman of the Year 2020’ by New African Woman, United Kingdom.

The First Lady of Zimbabwe, HE Ms. AUXILLIA MNANGAGWA, underlined: “On behalf of Zimbabwe, we extend our congratulations to our esteemed partner Senator, Dr Rasha Kelej, upon his recent appointment and recognition. The commitment and leadership she has demonstrated over many years as CEO of Merck Foundation, health activist and prolific woman in increasingly senior positions has undoubtedly served the Merck Foundation and our efforts to build health capacity in Zimbabwe and across Africa. I am proud of our valued partnership and look forward to working with her and continuing our joint efforts to advance the health sector landscape in my country and the rest of Africa and improve access to healthcare. equitable and quality health solutions.

Senator, Dr Rasha Kelej, CEO of Merck Foundation and President of Merck More Than a Mother, with sincere gratitude, happiness and pride to receive this recognition, expressed: “I am honored to receive this recognition from my dear sister HE Ms. AUXILLIA MNANGAGWA, The First Lady of Zimbabwe. Through our partnership, we were able to demonstrate our commitment to improving access to innovative health solutions in Zimbabwe and across Africa. Thank you very much and I look forward to using my gratitude to move the agenda forward to break the stigma of infertility, advocate for girls’ education, and help build health capacity in Zimbabwe.

The First Lady of Zimbabwe, in her congratulatory letter, appreciated the impactful joint programs undertaken to strengthen health care capacity, break the stigma of infertility and also strengthen the response to COVID-19, carried out under the leadership of the Senator, Dr Rasha Kelej through Merck Foundation.

Through their partnership, Merck Foundation has strengthened healthcare capacity in the country, providing specialist training to over 78 young Zimbabwean doctors in various specialties such as fertility and embryology, oncology, diabetes , cardiovascular disease, endocrinology, sexual and reproductive medicine, respiratory medicine, and acute medications. The Merck Foundation will continue to provide training scholarships to more physicians over the next 10 years to continue their mission of transforming the healthcare sector and advancing its professional capacity in Africa.

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