Esther Mbabazi, aged 24, is Rwanda’s first female pilot.
After training in Uganda and Florida, she now flies Rwandair’s CRJ-900 regional jets across Africa.
Esther’s father, also a pilot, was killed when she was eight. The plane he was flying overshot the runway during a landing in the Democratic Republic of Congo. She says that this never stopped her enthusiasm, but it has influenced the way she flies. “It has moulded my character as a pilot and I think what happened to my dad makes me a little more safe.”
Being the first female pilot is a big change for Rwanda. “I don’t make the flight announcements”, she says. “It scares the passengers!”