Zainab Hawa Bangura of Sierra Leone was appointed as Special Representative on Sexual Violence in Conflict in 2012.
Ms. Bangura, who is currently the Minister of Health and Sanitation for the Government of Sierra Leone, brings to the position over 20 years of policy, diplomatic and practical experience in the field of governance, conflict resolution and reconciliation in Africa. She was previously the second female Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, including Chief Adviser and Spokesperson of the President on bilateral and international issues. Ms. Bangura has been instrumental in developing national programmes on affordable health, advocating for the elimination of genital mutilation, managing the country’s Peace Building Commission and contributing to the multilateral and bilateral relations with the international community.
Ms. Bangura has on-the-ground experience with peacekeeping operations from within the United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL), where she was responsible for the management of the largest civilian component of the Mission, including promoting capacity-building of government institutions and community reconciliation. She is an experienced results-driven civil society, human and women’s rights campaigner and democracy activst, notably as Executive Director of the National Accountability Groups, Chair and Co-founder of the Movement for Progress Party of Sierra Leone, as well as Coordinator and Co-founder of the Campaign for Good Governance.