“The president’s comment (…) is a humiliation for all women,” said former deputy Catherine Ruge.

Samia Suluhu Hassan, the president of Tanzania, has been strongly questioned and condemned for her comments about female footballers in the country, who, she said, have “flat breasts” and therefore would not be attractive candidates for marriage.

“As for those who have flat chests:  you could think that they are men and not women, ” he said during a ceremony that took place last Sunday to celebrate the victory of the men’s national team in a regional soccer championship, reports AFP.

“And if you look at their faces, you might wonder, because if you want to get married, you want someone who is attractive, a lady who has the qualities you want,” he said, maintaining that in the case of the players ” those qualities have disappeared .”

“Today they make us proud as a nation when they bring trophies to the country, but if they look at their lives in the future, when their legs are tired of playing, when they are not healthy to play, what life will they lead?” He asked in reference to the athletes, and considered that “the life of marriage is like a dream for them . ” “Because even if one of you brings them home as your wife, your mother will ask you if it is a woman or a partner,” he added.

The statements of Hassan – the only woman who is currently active head of state in Africa, while the President of Ethiopia, Sahle-Work Zewde, plays a basically ceremonial role – were widely criticized on social media.

“The comment of the president Samia Hassan Suluhu on players is a humiliation for all women , ” tweeted Catherine Ruge, exmember and head of the women ‘s wing of the opposition party Chadema. “All women deserve respect.”

“Absolutely idiocy and misogynistic remarks regurgitated by a  female president! Shameful!” Wrote Maria Sarungi Tsehai, founder of the Change Tanzania social movement.