Mt Kenya basks in glory after getting 3 women governors

Anne Waiguru

Kirinyaga Governor Anne Waiguru displays a certificate she was awarded after being re-elected on August 13, 2022.

Photo credit: George Munene I Nation Media Group

Women from Mt Kenya are basking in joy after three of their own were elected as governors in the region.

Those who emerged as winners in the male dominated race were Anne Waiguru (Kirinyaga), Cecily Mbarire ( Embu) and Kawira Mwangaza ( Meru).

Ms Waiguru and Ms Mbarire vied on Deputy President William Ruto's United Democratic Alliance (UDA) whose wave was strongly felt in the region while Ms Mwangaza contested as an independent candidate.

Political analysts view this as a win for women, as in 2017 only one woman, Ms Waiguru, captured the gubernatorial seat in the entire region.

Tuesday's results from the region show the women believed that 'what a man can do, a woman can also do.'

"What has happened in the region shows that women are a force to reckon with. Women from the region can even produce a president if they continue believing in themselves," one of the women, Mercy Kithu from Embu said.

Ms Waiguru who was defending her seat, weathered all storms to beat seven other opponents, majority of them male political heavyweights.

She garnered 113,088 votes against her closest rival Wangui Ngirici's 105,677.

Immediately after she was declared the winner, Ms Waiguru said the political duel was tough but she sailed through.

And Ms Mbarire, who rode on the popularity of UDA, floored five opponents, all men to become the first Embu governor since the inception of Devolution. She beat Embu senator Lenny Kivuti who was her closest rival with a margin of about 3000 votes.

Ms Mwangaza baffled many when she trounced Meru King of politics Kiraitu Murungi without the support of any political party.

No one would have imagined that it was possible for Mr Murungi to lose to Ms Mwangaza in a region she had dominated the expansive county like a  colossus.

Ms Mwangaza polled a record 209,148 votes against her closest rival Mithika Linturi's 183,859  votes.

Women said residents from the region have confidence in female leadership and that is why they voted in favour of their colleagues in the gubernatorial race.

"Residents are embracing women leadership and that is why they voted for them overwhelmingly," another woman, Jane Muriuki from Kirinyaga said.

Women also bagged a number of parliamentary seats in the region.

Locals interviewed said they believed women better understood the interests of locals in terms of service delivery. 

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