Melania Trump, first lady to the United States, recently visited Ghana, Malawi, Kenya and Egypt as a part of her “Be Best” campaign which promotes the physical, mental and emotional health of children worldwide. She began her trip at the Ridge Hospital in Ghana, focusing on the high mortality rates the country faces. Melania’s time in Nairobi, Kenya was spent at Sheldrick Elephant Orphanage and Nest Children’s Home. Continuing in Lilongwe, Malawi, the First Lady shifted her focus towards education and spent her time at Chipala Primary School. Finally, in Cairo, Egypt, Melania gained insight on USAID’s Water Table Reduction Project.
This trip follows derogatory comments made by United States President Trump last January, grouping together African countries while discussing legislation to aid immigrants. The First Lady was greeted by several protests with signs stating “#MELANIATOO”, referencing the ongoing #MeToo battle against sexual assault in the United States. Another sign read, “69 Days Past the Deadline to Reunite Families”, which refers to President Trump’s zero tolerance immigration policy. Thousands of families were separated due to this policy earlier this year.
Melania Trump’s outfit while visiting Kenya, being all white including a hat, raised eyebrows and was deemed “colonial chic” by many amused yet annoyed Africans. Africans are also having a difficult time understanding the exact purpose of this recent trip; most of the trip has only brought about jokes regarding her fashion choices. Many find the photos of her ironic, due to her husband’s statements regarding African Americans in the United States. These statement follow many African Americans kneeling during United States football games as a form of protest again police brutality. This irony carries on to Trump’s current immigration policies.
by Abigail Fitzgerald, Volunteer