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When women lead
06 March 2020
Anyone that knows Felleng will attest to the fact that she is a dynamic strategist and trailblazer in public policy and the telecoms sector not only in South Africa but on the continent. She embodies the current UN International Women’s Day slogan – An equal world is an enabled world. Felleng was there when MTN first entered Nigeria and Africa at large.
She has played pivotal roles in the formulation of ICT regulatory policies, both in South Africa and further afield. It would be hard to overstate Felleng’s contribution to the formulation of an ICT regulatory framework in Africa, and over the years she has earned herself the reputation as a dynamic professional who has tackled the huge issues surrounding new telecoms ventures across the continent.
Now Chief Regulatory and Corporate Affairs Officer at MTN Group, Felleng brings decades of expertise to the diverse and copious daily challenges of managing MTN’s reputation. As a consummate ICT professional completely at home in the arena of public policy ,regulatory compliance and reputation management, Felleng has a number of issues dear to her heart. Noting that her own upbringing consisted of tremendous affirmation and empowerment from her parents, she feels strongly that parents have a crucial role to play in children’s lives.
From a solid base of parental support, Felleng grew into one of the most dynamic movers and shakers in the African ICT environment. It’s hard to detail all that Felleng Sekha has accomplished over the last two decades, but alongside playing such a critical role in MTN Group’s expansion, she has also served on the SABC board, was Chairperson of the National Telecommunications Forum (NTF), as well as Chairperson of the Independent Broadcasting Authority (IBA) – all roles where she had to formulate protocols from scratch, in the best interests of the public at large.
A remarkable woman, while taking on such heady and monumental challenges, Felleng also somehow ensured that she enacted social change she personally felt was needed. An example of just how enabling professional women can be, she formed an NGO targeting unemployed young men, insisting that no real gender equality transformation is meaningful if it leaves them behind.
In her own words, “Equality means defining your own success.” For Felleng, this means that women – from CEOs to housewives – should never succumb to external pressures to conform to a certain notion of success. “There is no one standard definition of success,” she says, “be what you want to be, unfettered by societal constructs.”
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