Tanzania: President Samia Suluhu Hassan declared “flat-chested” female footballers not being attractive enough to marry

Tanzanian President Samia Suluhu Hassan sparked an outcry on the country’s social networks after remarks on Sunday about “flat-chested” female footballers not being attractive enough to marry.
Mrs. Hassan was speaking on Sunday at a ceremony at the presidential palace, where she was receiving the men’s national under-23 team that won the Cecafa Cup, a competition bringing together national teams from East and Central Africa.
On this occasion, she pleaded for a better financing of women’s sports… but also triggered indignation by saying that many female footballers could never get married. “The ones who are flat-chested, you might think they are men and not women,” she said.
“When you see their faces, you might wonder (…) If you want to get married, you want someone who is attractive, a woman who has the qualities you want,” she said, adding that in female soccer players, “those qualities have disappeared.”
“Today they make us proud as a nation when they bring home trophies, but if you look at their future, when their legs are tired of playing, when they don’t have the health to play, what kind of life will they have?” she also stressed.
“I know some of them have been married, but a lot of them don’t have a marriage. Marriage life is a dream for them. Even if one of you here brings them home as a wife, your mother will ask if it is a woman or another man,” Hassan said. These statements triggered the indignation of Internet users.
Samia Suluhu Hassan, 61, became president of Tanzania in March after the death of John Magafuli. She is the only active female Head of State in Africa, along with Ethiopian President Sahle-Work Zewde, but her role is mainly ceremonial.