first lady Maureen Mwanawasa|
Former first lady Maureen
Mwanawasa has said her aspiration is to one day lead Zambia.
Maureen has said life hasnít been easy living on a US $1,000.00 monthly
allowance which she receives from government.
Maureen was speaking in an
interview with the BBC Network Africa.
Asked whether she missed being the
first lady, Maureen said she didnít because she had her chance and was looking
forward to becoming a president one day.
ďI donít, I had my chance. My
next aspiration is not to become a first lady of course because if I aspire to
become a first lady I must find a president to get married to. Iím not
interested in that. My next aspiration is one day to lead this country,Ē she
Responding to a question about her having been a flamboyant first
lady, Maureen said flamboyant may not be the right word but that she was a tough
woman and that led to people thinking there were two presidents running the
ďI was very hard to the extent that I donít even have to say it
myself but ask Zambians, they believed they had two presidents in State
Asked if she was ruling the country, Maureen said her late
husband was just lucky to have a supportive partner.
ďThatís what they
assumed but I was not ruling the country but to say that president Mwanawasa was
lucky to have had a very very supportive partner and thatís the way it is
supposed to be,Ē Maureen said.
Meanwhile, Maureen said life has not been
easy since the death of her husband as she faces quite a number of
ďIt hasnít been easy but maybe the advantage I have is that
my husband gave me the encouragement when he was still alive. He gave me room to
be myself, to be courageous, to work hard and my family, friends have been there
for me and just the inspiration that Iíve lost a person who was really vigorous,
courageous, so somehow we seem to have imitated part of his character,Ē she
She said it was difficult to move on as she was still mourning her
husband and raising their young children single handedly was proving to be a
Maureen said the retirement package of heads of state,
worse still for her as a spouse who does not get what the presidents get was
ďI canít rely on that. They give 50 per cent. That 50 per
cent may sound exciting but in dollar terms Iíll tell you I get a US $1,000 per
month, in Zambian terms its just about K5 million plus. My school-going
children, they are in private schools, one of them requires about US $2,000 per
term, my daughter in London has to pay 10,000 ponds per year, that is just for
fees, less accommodation and air transport,Ē she said.
said she decided that since this life was unsustainable and she cannot manage to
educate her children on her US $1,000 allowance, she would use her educational
advantage to work in order to make life better.
ďIím lucky that Iím
educated, Iím a lawyer by profession and Iíve got a masters degree and Iíve got
an honorary degree in law so what Iíve done, Iíve gone back to set up a law
practice and Iíll start working,Ē said Maureen.