Tuesday May 22, Mombasa. By Brian Peter
The County Assemblies Forum Vice Chair, Hon. Ndile has echoed the need for further legislation to address the rising cases of Gender-based violence in the country.
In her speech today, for the pre-summit ceremony for women legislators, prior to the Third Annual Legislative Summit held in Mombasa County; Hon. Ndile challenged the women leaders on how vigilant they are when it comes to airing and articulating issues faced by Kenyan women; how many laws have been passed at the Senate and even County Assembly levels, and how responsive they are to the needs of the girl-child and women living in both the rural and urban set-up.
“We would be doing justice to ourselves if we appraise our performance track for the life of devolution that we have had. Are we doing justice to the electorates who have allowed us to represent them?” Hon. Ndile challenged fellow women leaders.
She expressed remorse in the fact that hardly a day goes by without cases of gender-based violence being aired in the media.
“Although the government has invested heavily in our legal systems, women still suffer appalling discrimination and violence. Not a day goes-by without cases of domestic Violence being aired in the media. A good number succumb to this vice and their children are left at the center of it,” lamented the forlorn Member of Kitui County Assembly.
Recent statistics in Kenya point out to the high rates of gender-based violence.
A survey from Wangu Kanja Foundation (2016) whose report was launched by Kenya Government and United Nations states that:
One third of Kenyan Girls are subjected to sexual violence.
It also notes that nearly one in three Kenyan girls experience sexual violence before the age of 18.
Three quarters of Kenyan children also experience physical, sexual and emotional violence before the age of 18.
“These are some of the issues we need to Legislate on because growth and development do not thrive in the face of violence. There is a huge task ahead of us, we need to fasten our belts and step up to our responsibilities but even as we do that let us incorporate our men in this journey to support us in every stage of our work,” Hon. Ndile advised.
Besides, she also pointed out that the Constitution of Kenya 2010 has entrenched pertinent provisions relating to the participation of women at the highest levels by recognizing that women need to be offered a fair-level playing ground when it comes to Political representation. And that women perceptions, concerns and opinions form an integral part in decision-making process at all levels of development. Opportunities have also been set aside for women in the award of tenders, in Education and employment.
“This has been made possible through the Affirmative Action Act that takes care of both genders in as far as ensuring that none of the gender is misrepresented,” she expounded.
Hon. Esther Ndile called upon the women all over the county to seize their moment , and the men to work together with the women in ensuring that the gender equality right contained in the SDG number 5 of the Vision 2030 is fully achieved.
“Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 5 talks about Gender equality makes it clear that Gender equality is a right. Fulfilling this right is the best chance for women to meet some of the most pressing challenges of the current time, from economic crisis and lack of health care, to climate change, violence against women and escalating conflicts as witnessed in our country and the world over,” stressed Hon. Ndile.
Also speaking in the event today were: Hon. Milka Wanjiru- the Chairperson Women Caucus; Hon. Johnson Osoi- the Chairperson County Assemblies Forum; and Rt. Hon Sen. Kennetg Lusaka, Speaker of the Senate. The guest speaker was H. E. Margaret Mensah-Williams, the Speaker Upper Chamber, Republic of Namibia.
The Third Annual Legislative Summit Programme, held at the Pride Inn Paradise Beach Resort, Mombasa; and which has been running from Sunday 20th through to Friday 25th May 2018; features a prime devolution debate on aligning legislation to the developing agenda.
NAME: Esther Kalunda Ndile
PROFESSION: consultant Psychologist
EDUCATION: bachelors in Counselling Psychology, I Masters in Health Psychology (all from the University of Nairobi), currently a PHD student.
CURRENT POSITION: member of the County Assembly of Kitui, Vice Chairperson County Assemblies Forum (CAF)
BIO: Hon.Esther Kalunda Ndile holds dearly in her heart issues to do with women empowerment and is a believer in strong family values; as she holds that any sustainable development originates from the household level.