Underit Youth Group (UYG), which is an implementing partner of URAIA Trust in Nandi, Thursday trained women drawn from Tinderet, Aldai and Nandi Hills sub-counties on the importance of public participation, terming it essential for sustainable development.
Women have equal rights just like their male counterparts in public participation on issues pertaining to governance to enable a positive and balanced outcome in a community.
Their participation promotes effective implementation of gender friendly legislation and therefore determines policy outcome in a given society.
According to UYG coordinator Jacob Sanga women participation on governance matters strengthen their political participation thus paving the way for more women in political, business and civic arena leading to a more just, equitable and peaceful society.
Sanga added that participation helps citizens understand how the government operates as well as allows them to play an oversight role on government projects at their locality thus ensuring progression and performance on the part of their political leaders for instance Members of County Assembly (MCAs).
He noted that women participation in public debates raises issues affecting the society, especially special interest groups like women, People Living with Disabilities and the youth, thus enabling the government of the day to budget for the issues affecting the community.
“Women perform more duties at home compared to men thus being the most affected whenever there is a problem like water shortage, therefore you understand the magnitude of the matters in your locality. It is therefore imperative to be involved in the decision making process which can only be achieved through public participation in governance,” pointed out Sanga.
Francis Ng’eny, the UYG project officer encouraged women to create self-help groups and chamas as they can set a platform for participation in raising issues affecting them, the goals they want to achieve and how to achieve meaningful solutions.
Ng’eny utilized the same platform to talk about women empowerment like practising smart agriculture, how to tackle issues on early teenage pregnancies as well as Gender Based Violence (SGBV).
“When women form goal-oriented groups they are in a position to tackle several issues other than the sole objective of that group ranging from governance, early teenage pregnancies and how to deal with them, (SGBV) healthy lifestyles through smart agriculture,” noted Ng’eny.
He further said women demonstrate political leadership by championing issues of gender equality such as elimination of gender based violence and gender equality laws.
By Ruth Mainye and Collins Kiprotich