Meet the only woman in the world who became the first lady of 2 different countries

News Hub Creator

Becoming a first lady of a country is not an easy achievement, as you will first need to help your husband become the president.

Because of the somehow unique process it takes, not many women get the chance of becoming first lady once in their lifetime, let alone twice, but one African woman has somehow managed to become first lady with two different countries.

Who is she?

Her name is Graca Machel, and she is a Mozambican politician, a humanitarian worker, and an international advocate for women's and children's rights.

Born on the 17th of October 1945, Graca Machel is popularly known as the woman who became the first lady of two African countries, after getting married to two African men who ended up as president.

She served as Mozambique first lady between 11 November 1975 to 19 October 1986, before going on to serve as South Africa first lady between 18 July 1998 to 14 June 1999.

How did it happened?

Graca Machel got married to the first ever president of Mozambique, Samora Machel in 1975.

They had two children together, a boy and a girl, before Samora Machel death in 1986 after the crash of his presidential aircraft.

Graca Machel went on to become first lady again, but in a different country.

On the 18th of July 1998, she got married to South Africa first post-apartheid president, Nelson Mandela.

Nelson Mandela died on the 5th of December 2013.

Graca Machel before becoming a first lady.

She was born as Graca Simbine, and she is the youngest of 6 children. Graca was born 17 days after her father's death.

She got a lot of personal achievements in her life apart from being a first lady.

Graca Machel went to university in Portugal and she is capable of speaking 7 languages, French, Spanish , Italian , Portuguese, English, German and her local Xitsonga language.

After her university education, she returned to what is now known as Mozambique, and she got involved in independent movement while also working as a teacher.

After independence, Graca Machel became Mozambique first ever Minister of Education and Culture, on the 25th of June 1975.

She is credited with policies that helped a record number of students enrolled in school.

After the death of her first husband, she worked in a number of roles with the United Nations, which includes her role as an expert in charge of producing the United Nations report on the impact of armed conflict on children.

Graca Machel has achieved so much that it will be unfair to describe her as just the only woman to become first lady in two different countries.

She got a lot of awards and recognitions, both in Africa and in the world.

News Hub Creator

Home -> Country