May 27, 2022

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16 Iron ladies eyeing gubernatorial seats in August

The previously male-dominated governorship position is set for a major shake-up as over 16 women roll up sleeves to contest for a chance to head some of the 47 devolved units.

Since the inception of the devolved units in 2013, only a handful of women vied for what is regarded as the second powerful political position after the presidency.

The 16 women politicians will be vying for governorship across 12 counties in the country.

The only women who have managed to trounce their male counterparts for the governor seat are the late Joyce Laboso of Bomet county, Charity Ngilu of Kitui, and Ann Waiguru of Kiranyaga county.

The most recent one is Governor Ann Kananu of Nairobi County, who was sworn in after the impeachment of Mike Sonko.

Nairobi county

In Nairobi County, apart from the current governor Ann Kananu, other women contestants of the position include, businesswoman Agnes Kagure and Bishop Margaret Wanjiru.

Kagure who launched her campaign for the position recently will be running on a Jubilee ticket while Wanjiru will contest on a UDA ticket.

“My pledge is to turn Nairobi from a county of lamentations to that of opportunities, jubilation, and a county of choice,” Kagure said during the launch of her campaign at Kasarani.

In Nairobi County, women aspirants will faceoff with their male counterparts such as Timothy Wanyonyi, George Aladwa, Johnson Sakaja, and businessman Richard Ngatia who have since expressed interest in the seat.

Kagure who launched her campaign for the position recently will be running on a Jubilee ticket while Wanjiru will contest on a UDA ticket. Photo: Kagure/Twitter

Mt Kenya region

Kirinyaga women representative Purity Ngirici and former Justice Minister Martha Karua will be on the ballot to dethrone governor Ann Waiguru who is serving her first term.

Martha Karua will be trying her lack for the second time having been trounced by Waiguru in the 2017 General Election.

Martha Karua who vied for the presidency in the 2013 election has been rumored to be among those being considered for the running mate position.

In Embu County, nominated MP Cecily Mbarire will try her second attempt for the seat as she would be contesting on  UDA ticket to replace governor Wambora who is finishing his second term.

Kirinyaga women representative Purity Ngirici and former Justice Minister Martha Karua will be on the ballot to dethrone governor Ann Waiguru.

Rift Valley Region

In the Rift Valley region, the Counties of Nakuru and Kajiado have so attracted women aspirants for the gubernatorial seat.

Nakuru county Senator Susan Kihika will be trying her luck to dethrone the current governor, Lee Kinyanjui.

Kihika who will be vying on United Democratic Alliance has been traversing the county and it can be said it will be a hard battle for current governor Kinyanyui in his attempt to retain the seat.

Kajiado East MP Peris Tobiko, who recently joined Deputy President William Ruto’s party UDA, will be trying her lack for the Kajiado Governor seat that Joseph Ole Lengu will be aiming to retain for a second term.

Lake Region Counties

In the Lake Region, the counties of Homabay, Migori, and Busia have so far attracted women aspirants who are the county women representatives for their respective counties as aspirants for the governor seat.

Gladys Wanga will be contesting for Homabay, Pamela Odhiambo for Migori, and Florence Mutua for Busia County.

Gladys Wanga has been preparing for a bruising battle for the coveted ODM ticket, which if she manages to win the nomination, then the gubernatorial seat will be hers.

Wanga will be battling it out will strong candidates including former Nairobi governor Evans Kidero

Eastern Region

Kitui governor Charity Ngilu will be asking Kitui residents for a second term in the August election, where she is expected to face a male-dominated field for the seat.

Ngilu will have to trounce political heavyweights the former governor Julius Malombe, David Musila, Kenya High Commissioner to Uganda Kiema Kilonzo among others for her to retain the seat.

In Machakos County, Chief Administrative Secretary and former Kathiani MP Wavinya Ndeti will be trying her second jab for the Machakos gubernatorial seat.

She will be facing among others, United Democratic Alliance Chairperson Johnstone Muthama, a former senator in the county.

Coast Region

Kilifi gubernatorial seat has attracted Malindi MP Aisha Jumwa who will be competing for the seat on a UDA ticket to replace governor Amason Kingi after the end of his two terms.

Jumwa will find it hard as she has to battle one of the ODM aspirants that in Kilifi Deputy governor Gideon Saburi, Kilifi assembly Speaker Jimmy Kahindi, Gideon Mung’aro or Dan Kazungu.

As the clock ticks towards the August 9, General Elections, some MCAs appear to defy negative perceptions about MCAs and are now eying gubernatorial seats. Photo: Aisha Jumwa/Facebook.

In Kwale County, Deputy Governor Fatuma Achani has gotten the blessing of her boss governor Salim Mvurya to vie for the seat.

The more than 16 women contesting for the governorship will be out to break that myth on political leadership where their male counterparts have always occupied political offices that attract more power.