Wangari Maathai, founder of The Green Belt Movement, social activist, and the first African woman to win the Nobel peace prize has died of cancer at the age of 71. Maathai led an inspirational life, with perhaps her greatest legacy being The Green Belt Movement: http://greenbeltmovement.org, which she founded in 1977. Under her guidance, the GBM has planted tens of millions of trees in a bid to redress deforestation, climate change, soil degradation and loss of livelihoods.
Maathai’s untimely death was confirmed in a statement on the GBM website: “It is with great sadness that the family of Professor Wangari Maathai announces her passing away on 25 September 2011, at the Nairobi hospital, after a prolonged and bravely borne struggle with cancer. Her loved ones were with her at the time.”
APE is proud to have supported the Green Belt Movement over the years and is deeply saddened by the news of her death.