By John Kariuki
Women Professionals in the country have exuded confidence that Azimio Presidential Candidate the honourable Raila Amolo Odinga and his Running Mate the Honorable Martha Karua will win the Elections slated for 9th of August.
The Raila – Karua combination is now being popularly referred to as “RARUA.”
Pauline Warui of the Professional Women of Kenya says,
“The General election is in its last mile and without doubt the entry of Hon Martha Wangari Karua has disrupted the terrain with a number of positives. A combination of a seasoned politician and a female deputy nominee has elicited emotion which has reversed the voter apathy experienced just a month ago. As women take centre stage and the world recognises diversity, ‘women in leadership’ is not just a buzz phrase but a reality of the future. We have over 27 million women in Kenya forming over 50 per cent of the population. In an equal opportunity set up, women must dine and talk at the decision making table with as much representation.
Martha’s story from Kirinyaga County to trailblazing in very many aspects on the global stage is truly an inspiration to younger women who are closely learning by observing her every step marked by courage, determination and strong will. In her words, she clearly tells other older women to listen to the footsteps behind them as they clear the path for the next generation.
Hon Martha Karua is a clear model clarifying that we need to accept that the world leadership should not be an exclusive word used to define a male led stewardship. Women have led since time immemorial even at home. They have made difficult decisions in nurturing their children and feeding them to make sound homes where future leaders are created.
As is typical of female leadership in a patriarchal society, she has been labelled with chauvinistic biases which describe her as an ‘Iron Lady’. Have you ever heard of ‘Iron Man’ unless in the movies? This is truly a woman of conviction who has exhibited bravery and sustained her beliefs that she can make positive change in our country.
As the election draws near, we must be cognizant of the fact that leadership abides to rules and its not gender based.
Leadership is about inspiring others and we must embrace that men and women lead differently. As Ellen Johnson Sirleaf states,
“Women work harder. And women are more honest; they have less reasons to be corrupt.”
Women thus must take the centre stage first by supporting each other. The narrative that women are their worst enemies is a fallacy sold to us to divide us. We must vote and ensure we have representation at each level of elective Government.
Women for a long time have been driven by societal norms. What will people think of me if I vie? What will they say about me given how dirty politics is? Leadership requires courage. Stand up and be counted!
Women must form pillars for other women by providing the relevant skills required for the next Government.
Leadership steered by women then faces a greater challenge of delivering more as it’s greatly questioned due to the way we approach things from an emotional perspective. But as social scientists delve deeper into these differences, we must employ high emotional intelligence in connecting and listening to the electorate. We must also execute more with a lot of care in a new connected and digital way. We must not show weakness as women if we expect to be taken more seriously but mostly let us not shy away from being in the centre stage.
A lady of great courage, has cleared the toughest Bush, let’s support her by mobilising votes and actually giving her the job.”