The Star (Nairobi)

29 October 2012

Kenya: Parties Ignore Women Voters to Their Detriment

editorial

Presidential aspirant Martha Karua seems to be the only one concerned about the dearth of women aspirants for the various electoral posts.

She, and possibly Water minister Charity Ngilu, may be the only ones to pursue their ambition to be on the ballot come March 4.

There is a preponderance of women who want to become county representative but there is however, a marked absence of women aspirants for the gubernatorial or Senate races.

In order to meet the gender rule (which envisages that not more than one third of the elected officials are from one gender) more women need to present themselves for election.

This should be one of the key platforms that any of the myriad presidential aspirants should be campaigning on and not just paying lip service to.

They should be talking about the concrete programmes they and their parties have put in place to encourage more women to run for elections on their party tickets.

Being surrounded by women (some of them no worse than their sycophantic male colleagues) does not engender any confidence that any of the presidential aspirants -- other than maybe Martha Karua -- have given this any serious thought.

For women who make up nearly 51 per cent of the vote, maybe its time they critically reviewed their options.

Quote of the day: "Put it before them briefly so they will read it, clearly so they will appreciate it, picturesquely so they will remember it and, above all, accurately so they will be guided by its light, "Joseph Pulitzer, Hungarian born American newspaper editor and publisher who in his time was one of the most powerful journalists in the United States died on October 29,1911.

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