Mauritius: Clairette Ah Hen: first woman to head the Financial Service Commission

Date: August 31, 2011
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The 2011 SADC Gender Protocol Barometer shows that the proportion of women in economic decision making has increased by 6% from 18% in 2009 to 24% in 2011. There is only one woman finance minister (in Namibia) in the SADC region but women hold several influential positions. Mauritian Clairette Ah Hen is one of those few SADC women who have made it to the top as she is the first woman to head the country’s Financial Services Commission.

After her studies in England where she got a degree in Accountancy and Finance, Ah Hen was accredited to the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales; she worked for some time in London in a firm providing financial services.

When in the late 80’s the firm decided to come down to Mauritius, it was an opportunity for Ah Hen to get back to her country which was undergoing changes in the financial sector.
Ah Hen has had a very fruitful career: she has been working overseas, has been Dean of the Faculty of Law and Management at the University of Mauritius whilst collaborating with the World Bank.

In the beginning of this month, she took up her function as Chief Executive Officer of the Financial Services Commission (FSC) and since then the word “challenge” has been her leitmotiv.

Ah Hen wants to enlarge the vision of the FSC and for her it is not enough to just meet the requirements of set benchmarks; one should adapt to changes and aim at the best. Optimism is her motto and it is on this note that she wants to carry her work at the FSC. She views it as an opportunity to contribute to the development of her country and she intends to inculcate this spirit to her team.

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