First Lady Margaret Kenyatta is rooting for enhanced gender equality and women empowerment, especially during this Covid-19 era.
The First Lady who spoke during the virtual celebrations to mark International Women Day last week, noted the need for a level playing field for women and girls irrespective of their race, religion or social background.
She said women must raise their voices against Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) and early marriages, which impede girls’ pathway to reaching their gifted potential.
Ms Kenyatta encouraged more women to actively seek elective and other positions of leadership both at national and county levels.
While applauding the current 23 per cent representation of women in the National Assembly, the First Lady said more work needed to be done to achieve the constitutionally proposed two-thirds gender representation.
“Let us continue working, together, for the progress we all believe in. And let us begin with ourselves, in our own spaces, in our homes, in our schools and with our children. We know that women can bring a difference in leadership by ensuring the needs and aspirations of women and men, boys and girls are addressed equitably,” she said as she rooted for enhanced women empowerment, especially during the Covid-19 era.
Bouncing back better
This year’s International Women’s Day (IWD) under the theme ‘Women in Leadership: Achieving an equal future in a Covid-19 world’ was celebrated last Monday.
Public Service and Gender CS Prof Margaret Kobia said the theme illustrates the urgency of putting women empowerment at the core of recovery and bouncing back better in the context of the pandemic.
She noted that while the journey of women in leadership has been long and bumpy, their determination and commitment has yielded fruits.
“Therefore, we celebrate the gains made and also reflect on the social, economic, political and cultural context in which women and girls live and work,” the CS said.
Commonwealth Secretary General Patricia Scotland, stressed that gender equality and women empowerment are essential components of human development and basic human rights.
Maendeleo ya Wanawake Organisation (MYWO) Chairperson Rahab Muiu recognised the work of grass-root women who she said engage in a lot of unpaid care work.
“These women on the ground do a great job in sustaining families, communities and in building their economic wellbeing,” she said.
The event also witnessed the national launch of the continental digital platform dubbed ‘the 50 Million African Women Speak’.
The project is geared towards empowering millions of women in Africa to start, grow and scale up businesses by providing a one-stop shop.