first female fighter pilot

Meet Thokozile Muwamba, First Female Fighter Pilot in the Zambian Air Force

Thokozile MuwambaA young woman in Zambia has just made history.

Second Lt. Thokozile Muwamba has become Zambia’s first female fighter pilot to be accepted into the country’s primarily male military.

After she joined the military in 2012, Muwamba was selected to become part of a Zambian Air Forces program which trains female pilots in an effort to close the disparity  between males and females in the field.

Muwamba stated, “Men are not a competition but counterparts that one should work with, and hence women should begin to participate and realize their abilities. Because of this understanding, I am ready to undertake this task ahead of me.”

She added, “I look at the fact that when I am in the airplane, the aircraft knows no sex as it depends on my input, even if I am a woman,” said the fighter pilot, who dropped out of Copperbelt University her freshman year to pursue her dream career of becoming a pilot. “I can also give it the right steering for it to respond correctly.”

In 2015, Zambia Air Force commander Lt. Gen. Eric Mwaba Chimese announced the decision to introduce female pilots in order to support the push toward gender equality in Zambia. Brigadier-General Kapungwe, commander of the ZAF base in Mumbwa, says that Muwamba becoming the first female fighter pilot shows that women in Zambia are making progress. He stated, “We want to see more women in the country become fighter pilots in future.”

Congratulations to Ms. Muwamba!

By: Danielle Dixon

Follow her on Twitter: @tooprettydani

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