Melania Trump leaves Washington on Monday for a four-country tour of Africa as she looks to carve her own diplomatic path.
Peeling away from the shadow of her mercurial husband, the trip to Ghana, Malawi, Kenya and Egypt will be her first big solo international trip
Spokeswoman Stephanie Grisham said Melania Trump’s Africa tour will be a “diplomatic and humanitarian visit” focused on her #BeBest campaign for “children and their well-being.”
In typical fashion, it was Donald Trump who seized the headlines, telling journalists last week that his wife was “making a big trip to Africa.”
“We both love Africa. Africa is so beautiful, the most beautiful part of the world, in many ways,” continued the president, who was once reported to have dismissed the continent as a collection of “shithole countries.”
But even if Donald Trump stole her thunder, there’s no doubt that Melania Trump means to take ownership of the visit.
At a time when her husband’s government is pushing for radical reductions of US aid around the world, Melania will “showcase” the work of the huge US Agency for International Development, or USAID, Grisham said.
“This is her trip, her initiative,” she said.