Browsing Tag

women

KEWOPA
The Telescope

WOMEN LEADERS HAVE TO STEP UP THEIR GAME

Women around the world at every socio-political level find themselves under represented in most places of decision making. Although Kenya has continued to show effort in incorporating women in those levels, though not sustainable at the moment, the country is making steps in the right direction.

However, in the recent past Kenyan women leaders’ style of leadership has left a lot to be desired. A blend of misplaced priorities and restricted tendencies have continually lurked around topical issues that craved for their voice and input; which they barely managed to give.

Recently Ruiru MP, Esther Gathogo, threatened to strip ‘naked’ to protest a fellow legislator’s remarks toward the President and a woman Cabinet secretary much to the bewilderment of those in attendance and viewers. Her actions which were to raise attention to the matter in the relevant corridors of power nevertheless contrast to the little or no attention that was given by women legislators when the bulletins were awash with news concerning the rogue gynaecologist Mugo wa Wairimu and his revolting escapades.

“The truth is that women leaders have failed the electorate. They ought to step up to their duty of representing national issues”

More disturbingly is that Gathogo, like the rest of the women leaders, was readily available to defend influential individuals over matters that were generated from a name calling contest rather than use the same energy in addressing rather more serious issues that concern women and society. In light of this matter how is it possible then, that there is hope for future issues that touch on women to be granted proper address that they deserve in the society?

Is it hard to account for the discrepancies of the weight of the matters above? Which of them fits into the profile of issues that the women in government should have put more focus on?051005_wangari_hmed_6a.grid-6x2

The truth is that women leaders have failed the electorate. They ought to step up their game on national issues rather than cow to their inner sense of hypocrisy on self-serving interests. Great women in history have championed and even sought to adopt more masculine styles to succeed in fighting for sustainable courses that affect society. A good example is the late Nobel Laureate Wangari Maathai and First Lady Margaret Kenyatta.

Additionally, women in power have been modest in championing tenable change. In their quest for re-framing gender balance, they have lost focus of what is important that could actually propel the country in achieving gender equality goals more quickly.

Keen focus on the kernel of key issues affecting society has the power to alter the current dominant majority and the mindsets. Besides, as much as Kenya and the world now needs a new model for leadership that eliminates the depressing syndrome of the second and instead places greater value on those who lead more with emotional intelligence, it is about time women leaders stepped up to their role in society.

At the end of the day, what matters is results and women leaders should collectively advance towards providing proper representation and sustainable solutions required in key areas affecting women and society and not serving their own welfare or participating in ludicrous gimmicks.

This article was published on People Weekend on October 3-4, 2015

12
The Telescope

Women ought to embrace the spirit of competition

Women have made long strides towards attaining independence, authority and opportunity.  On the domestic front, women are experts at a tensile brand of quiet authority and no one can deny that she wields — without lifting a finger and by virtue of sheer existence — an outsize, open-ended, irrevocable influence in life.

Nevertheless, for a few thousand years women had no history. Marriage was our calling and meekness our virtue but now what has been traditionally considered female traits — strong communication skills, a collaboration instinct a gift of juggling emotional  intelligence are hailed as desirable leadership qualities.

Over the last century, in stuttering succession, we have gained a voice, a vote, a room, decorously or defiantly. Women have begun to transform the idea of power which had for so long been a male construct.

Across the board, women are separating success from purpose, focusing less on titles, careers or status but rather more on accomplishments, influence and responsibility.

Nonetheless, even with this considerable amount of success, a glance at the proportion of women in public positions of power today versus their male counterparts still reveals that we have a long way to go.

Today, in most countries, women still face extra challenges when pursuing public positions. The motion on the two-thirds gender rule has recently amassed strong protests among respective quarters, especially women leaders. The rule that will unlock the current gender impasse without acrimony placing women in key decision making arms of government seeks to increase the female voice in national issues.

However, democracy specifically in elective processes call for competition and it’s about time women stepped up to the task.

Internationally, women in power such as Hillary Clinton (now vying for POTUS in the 2016 elections)MTE4MDAzNDEwMDU4NTc3NDIy and former Australian PM Julia Gillard, continue to inspire women to go for top leadership positions.

Liberians, for instance, did not vote in Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf as President based on her gender but her abilities as a leader. Margaret Thatcher was also Britain’s PM for 11 years and fought hard to retain her seat without the expectation for favours just because she was a woman.

Sexism and gender should never be a political issue,  neither are manners, respect or courtesy. Women who intend to occupy the positions that will be availed should rise to the reality and create the requisite atmosphere to competitively participate in elective posts to join the legislature and county assemblies. Handling issues much less like outsiders but equal competitors to the political process.

This article was published on the May 16  2015  in People Daily Kenya