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Women challenged to seek elective positions in August polls



The Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) Council of Kenya convened a Women Caucus to discuss the role of women in peace and nation building as the country prepares for the August 2022 general election.

Women from across the country were called upon to be at the forefront in championing for Peace among communities, create awareness in the second phase of the voter registration drive, and ultimately seek leadership positions in the upcoming election.

Speaking during the meeting held at the Council’s head office at Nyayo House, Nairobi, the Chairman Stephen Cheboi sensitized women on major role to play in this electioneering period including, peace building, participating in active politics, and awareness creation.

“Being the majority of the population, women from all sides of the political divide should fight and champion for the rights and interests of all women especially those who aspire to hold leadership positions,” he said.

Cheboi encouraged the government to prioritize women’s agenda by enforcing the two thirds gender rule in both the legislative and executive arms of government.

He further stated that the Council will continue its fight against Gender-Based Violence (GBV), champion for equity, and organize more conferences to discuss matters surrounding the empowerment of women in the society.

Seeds of Peace Africa International (SOPA) Chairman Ambrose Ongwen advised women aspiring for leadership positions to have dignity, take responsibility for every choice and decision they make, and remain accountable to themselves and everybody.

“To be a good leader you must have a vision for the value you have, the purpose for this vision, and the commitment in pursuing this vision,” he reiterated adding that the principle of contribution is key for women in leadership to be remembered for making a positive difference in people’s lives.

Ongwen added that for an outstanding legacy, aspiring women leaders should treat themselves with respect, dignity, and value to earn the same in return while welcoming engagements to share different ideas on leadership.

NETCARE International Executive Director Ruth Kawira insisted that women have an important role to play in environmental conservation since climate change is integral.

She observed that Kenya is advantaged from the release of approximately Sh. 18 billion by the National Treasury for the purposes of climate action and encouraged women to exploit the grassroots environmental desk and be instructed on how to access the monies.

“One qualification to access the roughly 336 million allocated by the government to each County is the ability to come up with a climate change law and the NGOs should also be well known from the National to the County level,” she added.

Kawira further encouraged the women-led NGOs to write innovative, transformative, and bankable proposals in order to access the funds both from the Kenyan government and donors available for financing climate action projects.

While urging women to support their fellow women in social activism and politics, she listed mitigation, adaptation, financing, technology, capacity development, and gender as the pressing issues women should rally around.

Meanwhile, Angela Munyasia, a nominated member for the County Assembly of Machakos encouraged women aspiring for political positions to be strong by raising their voices against suppression and ignoring negativity, insults, intimidation, and discrimination.

“I have been involved in numerous community work including the formation of 13 football clubs for girls under the Caring Hearts and Hands Foundation where I have managed to educate over 300 girls from secondary to the university,” she revealed.

Echoing her sentiments of women not waiting to be given leadership posts but instead seeking them, presidential hopeful Amb. Esther Waringa stressed on the perfect time to have a woman president in Kenya.

She urged women to prove their capacity to lead as she congratulated all women aspirants in the upcoming general election for their bold spirit and confidence.

“I appeal to donors and the media to fund and offer more coverage to women seeking elective posts for policy change and to influence the political good will that will ultimately achieve the two thirds gender dream,” Waringa reiterated.

Through her Public Service Governance consortium, an NGO that promotes good, accountable, and peaceful governance, Amb. Waringa made the intent of eliminating divisive politics as she vies for the Kenyan presidency through the slogans ‘My Peace, Your Peace, My Responsibility’ and ‘Together We Can’.

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