They urge women to change their attititudes towards those aspiring for elective posts. ‘Country will realise significant growth if men engaged women rivals on issues’
Wants end to gender bias
The National Assembly deputy speaker and 15 women MPs have urged male aspirants to stop discriminating against women rivals and, instead, engage them on issues. They expressed fears over rampant use of sexist statements. The leaders said sexism is to blame for the low number of elected women.
Sixteen women legislators have urged male aspirants to stop discrimination against women rivals and, instead, engage them on issues.
Led by National Assembly Deputy Speaker Joyce Laboso and Runyenjes MP Cecily Mbarire, they expressed fears over rampant use of sexist statements. The leaders blamed this for the low number of elected women.
The MPs visited Embu county on Thursday to drum up support for Mbarire, who has declared to run for governor. In an exercise called ‘Women for Women’, they said the resent public spat between Mbarire and Senator Lenny Kivuti was a sign of women’s prejudicial treatment.
They said the country will realise significant growth if men engaged their women rivals in issue-based politics. The MPs urged women to use their numerical strength to elect fellow women.
Present were Zipporah Kering (Nandi), Rachel Shebesh (Nairobi), Beatrice Nkatha (Tharaka-Nithi), Florence Kajuju (Meru), Saipai Tuya (Narok), Sarah Korere, Esther Gathogo (Ruiru) and Peris Tobiko (Kajiado East).
Others were Sanjeev Birdi, Naisula Lesuuda, Beatrice Elachi (nominated), Alice Wahome (Kandara), Rachel Nyamai (Kitui Central) and Mary Emaase (Teso South). Kirinyaga governor hopeful Anne Waiguru also attended.
“I urge my rivals to respect me as an equal competitor and not mistreat me because I’m a woman. I’ll reciprocate in equal measure. If they look down on me, I’ll get angry. We should not be told we’ll be bought like vegetables,” Mbarire said.
She said she has faced gender-based discrimination in her 15 years in politics and the situation has not changed. Mbarire said her goal is to improve county leadership by managing its resources well.
Runyenjes MP Cecily Mbaririe Meru woman representative Florence Kajuju National Assembly Deputy Speaker Joyce Laboso during an interview in her office in Parlaiment on July