Novák stresses motherhood to women eyeing career success

HUNGARIAN President Katalin Novák has encouraged young girls and women worldwide not to give up on becoming mothers and being successful in their careers.

She made the remark during a media briefing with President Samia Suluhu Hassan at the State House in Dar es Salaam, on Tuesday.

Ms Novák, who arrived in Dar es Salaam late on Monday for a three-day working visit, said as female presidents, they have the privilege and responsibility of encouraging young girls and women in their countries not to give up on their hopes and dreams.

“As women leaders and mothers, we agree that motherhood is a significant part of our lives. She added, “We wouldn’t have given up motherhood regardless of how far we went in our careers”.

In her remarks, she further said they spoke about the two countries’ economic relations during their meeting and agreed that there was still room for manoeuvre, improvement and intensification.

“We would like to strengthen that relationship and the trade between the two nations, she said, adding, “For that reason, we would like to organise a business forum in Hungary next year in conjunction with President Samia’s visit and bring together the key players from the business sectors of both nations so that we can identify areas of improvement or investment. In the future, we are extremely open to this,” stated President Novák.

She also stated that she will host a conference for female leaders throughout the world next year and President Samia confirmed that she will attend. She said that Dr Samia was kind enough to join the Network of Family-Friendly Presidents, which was another very tangible step they had taken. “So together we are now two women in the network and I think we need more women in the network,” she said.

“We made very concrete decisions today and you count on me as a friend in Europe and Hungary as a gateway for Tanzania to Europe as well,” she said.

The two Heads of state also discussed demographic issues during their meeting. President Novák said that Hungary is in a completely different situation in comparison to Tanzania because of its dwindling population and low fertility rate, both of which the country is actively addressing.

In Hungary, according to her, there has been a family-focused policy in the last decade that also shows positive outcome, although it still has some challenges.

Ms Novák describes her visit as a milestone in the relationship between Tanzania and Hungary, noting that it was also because the first female presidents of the two nations met.

“We’ve come to Tanzania to get to know you better and to learn about your culture and way of life. We come to Tanzania for a reason, but we don’t want to meddle in your internal politics or decisions. However, we would want to understand and we appreciate the fact that you are also a respectable nation.

President Novák also expressed gratitude to Dr Samia for the open and sincere discussion they had.

She said that one of the important areas for collaboration between the two nations is education, which she described as being Tanzania’s and Hungary’s shared priority.

In addition, she stated that they allow young people from Tanzania and Hungary the opportunity to learn and study abroad as well as to get to know the locals and the language, giving them a chance to be more successful in their own countries.

According to her, the Stipendium Hungaricum programme scholarship is entirely funded by the Hungarian government, as a result, some 12,000 students from 90 different countries, including Tanzania, are currently enrolled in Hungary to study.

She stated that the agreement signed yesterday allows them to provide scholarships for Tanzanian students for three years. However, that marks a milestone because the nature of the cooperation changes and becomes a mutual offering. As of this day forward, Hungarian students will be able to study in Tanzania at Tanzania’s expense.

The very good news about the 200 Tanzanian students who have benefited from the programme so far is that they later return home. Therefore, President Novák said, “Our idea is not to extract the best-educated people from Tanzania to come and stay in Hungary but to offer them the chance to study and later on returning to their homeland.”

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