25 June 2013

Kenya: Political Baptism for Lawyer Kethi Kilonzo

Photo: The Star
Kethi Kilonzo, late Mutula Kilonzo's daughter (file photo).

Makueni — It is perhaps only fitting then that his daughter's foray into the world of politics included a convoy of over 100 boda bodas whose number steadily grew the closer she got to the Unoa playground of Wote town in Makueni county.

Unoa would be the ground on which she formally launched her first run at political office, hoping to win the hearts of Makueni residents and in turn a chance to fill her late father's shoes in the Senate.

It was not the first time though that Kethi had caught the attention of Makueni residents or the rest of Kenya for that matter.

An appearance before the Supreme Court in March had Kenyans creating Facebook groups such as, "Kethi kilonzo for president 2018," and "Counsel Kethi Kilonzo - My heroine," in her honour.

On Monday however, she did not don a robe and collar. Instead she wore a sash with the word, "Usher," on it together with hundreds of faded umbrellas - the Wiper symbol.

Despite its derelict state, the sash was intended to depict her, as pageant queens usually are, as the chosen one - the one the Wiper Democratic Movement has selected to defend the Makueni Senate seat.

"People kept asking us who our candidate was but we couldn't say it in Nairobi because Kethi wanted to announce it in Makueni," Wiper Chairman David Musila said.

In a show of might and solidarity, Kethi was also accompanied by former Prime Minister Raila Odinga and ex-Vice President Kalonzo Musyoka who also happen to be the Coalition for Reforms and Democracy (CORD) principals, the coalition under which Wiper falls.

"Kethi has a Masters in Law and I don't even have one," Musyoka said adding, "I'd like to call on the Minority Leader of the Senate, who should have been the majority, to ensure she ends up on the legal committee and the International Relations committee because the whole world must see the kind of girl Mutula raised."

When it was her turn to speak, Kethi was hoisted onto the back of a pick up amid cries of, "even if they try to steal this one, there'll be too many votes to beat," and, "we're taking the seat in the morning, hell we've already won," from the crowd that was gathered at Unoa.

"I shall be back on Thursday to receive my nomination certificate from the County Returning Officer and as you stand with me then, may you also stand with me at the ballot," the legal mind said, well aware that despite the chanting and Facebook groups, the proof will lie in the number of votes cast in her favour come July 22.


Olive Burrows has been writing features for the last five years having studied communication at Daystar University. She hopes to make a difference through human interest features and is passionate about the environment. She hopes to grow her experience doing radio and video features at Capital FM and to contribute to the brand's tradition of trend setting.

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