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Public participation on the two-thirds gender rule launched in Kajiado

The Multi Sectoral working group on the realization of the two-thirds gender principle has launched countrywide public participation in Kajiado.
Speaking during the launch, former Ijara MP Sofia Abdi Noor, a member of the working group said that the mandate of the working group is to look for ways and means of realizing the implementation of the two-thirds gender principle.
Hon. Noor remarked that they are therefore engaging Kenyans so that they can give their views on the best way to implement the principle as it’s implementation has been a problem for a long time even though it is enshrined in the Kenyan constitution.

While clarifying that the gender principle is not based on women only but also caters for men, Noor said that the president is keen on its implementation and the working group will present all views that will be recommended by Kenyans on the team’s final report.

Another member of the working group, Hassan ole Naado, urged all Kenyans to show up for the public participation exercise and present their views on how best to implement the principle  adding that the working group seeks the recommendations of all Kenyans because nobody can actually think or act on their behalf.
“We want Kenyans to tell us what they want to see and how best we can do it so that it is an all-inclusive process,” said Ole Naado.

Teclah Tum, the former Nandi County Women MP, said that the 13th Parliament has not met the constitutional requirement of the two-thirds gender rule.

“The 12th Parliament was about to be dissolved due to the same issue and that is why we are going all over Kenya to ask how it can be implemented as it is the law,” said the M.P.

She added that though women make up 52per cent of the Kenyan population, they have often faced challenges in matters leadership and this should be adequately addressed.

Kennedy Odhiambo from Masculinity Institute remarked that men perceive that women have been more empowered which is not true as most women have not gotten a chance to lead.

He encouraged women to present themselves for elective positions so that the two-thirds gender principle can be achieved.

Janet Sereu, Kajiado’s county Executive committee member for gender noted that Kajiado has put in place a gender mainstreaming programme which carries out mentorship programmes for boys and girls.

“All partners in the gender sector working group are working together to come up with strong programmes and we already have policies like Gender mainstreaming, women economic empowerment, gender based violence and the Anti-FGM policy in place,” said Sereu.

She added that due to the various partners working together, Kajiado women are proving to have a lot of capacity which has built their self-confidence and helped them have a positive mindset. They have also noted a change in the women through the economic and mentorship activities.

Under Article 27(8) of the constitution, there should not be more than two-thirds of either gender in any elective or appointive position. The on-going public participation exercise will be carried out in all the counties.

By Diana Meneto

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