From obscurity to youngest woman MP in Mt Kenya region

Njeri Maina

Njeri Maina, the Kirinyaga Woman Representative elect. She is the youngest MP to be elected in the region.

Photo credit: George Munene I Nation Media Group

At 28, Njeri Maina was elected Kirinyaga woman representative in the August 9 polls, becoming the youngest MP to capture such a seat in the area.

She had moved from a life of relative obscurity in her village to an overnight political star, making history as one of the youngest MPs elected in Kenya.

With determination, Ms Maina, a lawyer by profession, threw her hat in the ring under the United Democratic Alliance (UDA) and trounced political heavyweights.

She polled a record 175,001 votes against her closest rival Rose Karani's 49,892.

Former Kirinyaga County Assembly Speaker Anne Wangechi came in third with 10,022.

Ms Maina said she felt honoured following her resounding victory.

"I'm grateful to the residents for believing in the capability of a young person," the excited Ms Maina said.

She promised to serve all without discrimination.

"My commitment is to take charge of the enormous task ahead of me and deliver quality and impactful leadership," she said.

Her key focus will be to help enact adequate legislation targeting disenfranchised groups and society as a whole.

She also said she will initiate sustainable economic programmes to empower women and young people.

Born in Kibingoti village, Ndia Constituency, she attended Kiangoma Primary School, about eight kilometres from her parents' home.

She used to trek to school, braving chilly weather. Ms Maina grew up in humble beginnings to become one of the most educated girls in her village.

After completing primary school, she joined Kabare Girls School.

She proceeded to the University of Nairobi, where she studied law and graduated among the top students in her class.

She then attended the Kenya School of Law’s Karen campus and was admitted as an advocate of the High Court of Kenya in 2019. 

She has litigated numerous cases pro bono, representing widows and destitute families in Kirinyaga.