To change the overwhelmingly white, male face of the diplomatic service, the UK Foreign Office has appointed its first black female career diplomat as a high commissioner as it steps up efforts.
NneNne Iwuji-Eme, who has spent 16 years in the Foreign Office, will take up her role as British high commissioner to Mozambique in July, taking over from Joanna Kuenssberg.
Iwuji-Eme said it was “an honour and a privilege” to be appointed to the role and that she hoped she would inspire others to pursue their ambitions.
“I hope my appointment as the first British black female career diplomat to this position will inspire young talent, regardless of race or background, to pursue their ambitions in the Foreign Office,” she said.
“I look forward to forging even stronger connections between Britain and Mozambique – two close members of the Commonwealth family.”
The foreign secretary, Boris Johnson, said Iwuji-Eme has “vision, experience and energy” for the appointment.
As the country heads in a new and exciting direction, it’s important that we have the brightest and the best batting for Britain. Our great diversity is an invaluable asset on the global stage.”