‘Get more involved’

Obama says more women in leadership leads to less ‘bullying’ and ‘better policies’

Former US President Barack Obama (MARCO LONGARI/AFP/Getty Images)

Speaking at a town hall in Johannesburg, South Africa, as part of leadership developing initiative, former U.S. President Barack Obama declared that having more women in leadership was the key to a better future — for everyone. Obama’s call for greater representation of women in leadership was delivered in front of 200 young emerging leaders from across Africa as part of a five-day workshop for the Obama Foundation Leaders: Africa program. The workshop also featured a number of powerful and influential women leaders — including famous children’s rights activist Graca Machel, the widow of Nelson Mandela, and former Liberian president Ellen Johnson Sirleaf.

“Women in particular … I want you to get more involved. Because men have been getting on my nerves lately,” said Obama. “I mean, every day I read the newspaper and I just think like, ‘Brothers, what’s wrong with you guys? What’s wrong with us?’ I mean, we’re violent, we’re bullying. You know, just not handling our business. So I think empowering more women on the continent — that right away is going to lead to some better policies.”

Obama, clearly, isn’t the only who thinks it’s time for more women in power. In the U.S., a record-setting number of women are running for office — including an unprecedented number of black women in states such as Alabama.

Read the full story at The Washington Post and TIME magazine.

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