Admira Antonio is determination personified. Flying an airplane was feat no one would talk her out of and today while some may call it a man’s world, Admira stands with her head and shoulders above many, becoming a commander in 2018.
“The attention is always on you as a woman. They want to see if you really know what you’re doing, why you got there, if someone made it easier for you, so I had to prove my skills, my professionalism”, António said.
Up in the sky, there are two realities: almost 80% of the on-board assistants are female, but only five percent of pilots are women and the proportion of female roles in technical or leadership positions in aviation is even lower.
A scenario described by the International Civil Aviation Organization and the South African Civil Aviation Authority when they promoted the first global gender aviation summit last year.
Admira Antonio witnesses this reality: when she rose to the level of commercial aviation at Mozambican airlines in 2012, she only drove alongside men, which came naturally to her after growing up “between brothers and cousins.
But she still recalls scenes of prejudice, such as when a trainer apologized “for being a girl” when she tried to correct a response in a theoretical class
António recalls how this only gave her “more strength.”
Mozambique has one of the highest rates of gender inequality in the world and António does what was once a man’s job.