Tanzania lobbies as TMA’s Kijazi seeks UN weather agency rank

12Jun 2019
Henry Mwangonde
Dar es Salaam
The Guardian
Tanzania lobbies as TMA’s Kijazi seeks UN weather agency rank

A campaign is on to rally international support for the Director General of the Tanzania Meteorological Authority (TMA) Dr Agness Kijazi who is contesting the position of Third Vice President of the World Meteorological Organisation (WMO) at a congress currently underway in Geneva.

Director General of the Tanzania Meteorological Authority (TMA) Dr Agness Kijazi.

The congress which is held after every four years will also elect a First Vice President and Second Vice president as well as other officials for the agency. It has been taking place from 3rd June and ends on the 14th while the following day is reserved for any outstanding items.

Dr Kijazi’s candidacy for the position was endorsed by the African Ministerial Conference on Meteorology (AMCOMET) in Cairo back in February.

Tanzania is represented at the meeting by the sector’s deputy minister Atashasta Nditiye who has appealed to African countries to support Tanzania’s candidacy, TMA said in a statement yesterday.

Dr Kijazi is the only African candidate after all the countries agreed to back her candidacy.

“Looking at the position that we are requesting and the respect that we have been given by fellow Africans to support Dr Kijazi, we are still in the course of soliciting support from non-African countries to support the candidacy,” said Nditiye.

In remarks at the opening of the meeting, WMO president David Grimes and Secretary General Prof. Petteri Telaas appealed to the members to support Dr Kijazi for her outstanding performance in the sector. They also cited the paucity of women vying for the post for a long time.

WMO regulations provide that eligibility for election to the offices of President and Vice-Presidents of the organization is confined to persons who are designated as directors of their meteorological or hydro-meteorological services by WMO members ahead of the WMO Convention.

If the WMO President, a Vice-President or an elected member of the executive council ceases to be a director of a meteorological or hydro- meteorological service, the member shall cease to hold such office.

Dr Kijazi has more than30 years of work experience in the field of meteorology at national and international levels, a career she started in 1988.

She holds a PhD in climate prediction for extreme events and Master of Science (Graduate Environmental Science in Meteorology) from the University of Cape Town, South Africa and a B.Sc. Hons (major in Meteorology) from the University of Nairobi.

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